Schools Served by Literacy & Intervention Programs

Three major K-12 education initiatives were approved during the 2015 Legislative Session to improve literacy and assist low-performing schools: Read by 3, Zoom Schools, and Victory Schools.

This infographic: (1) illustrates Nevada’s academic performance compared to the nation; (2) provides demographic data on students served by these programs, and (3) lists other current funding sources and intervention efforts at Zoom and Victory Schools. Updated August 3, 2015 with data for all new Zoom Schools.

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  • Nevada’s 2015 Legislative Session was marked by efforts to increase targeted funding for K-12 education reforms with accountability measures. K-12 educational outcomes in Nevada have persistently lagged behind other states. In 2013, Nevada’s fourth and eighth grade students performed significantly lower than the national average in math and reading on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). For fourth grade students, only 27 percent were proficient in reading and 34 percent were proficient in math. For eighth grade students, 30 percent were proficient in reading and 29 percent were proficient in math.

    Source: National Assessment of Educational Progress 2013

  • To address low academic achievement, the Nevada Legislature and Governor Sandoval approved three major K-12 initiatives during the 2015 Legislative Session: Read by 3 ($27 million), Zoom Schools ($100 million), and Victory Schools ($50 million). Each of these programs has a different emphasis: Read by 3 aims to ensure that all students read proficiently by grade 3; Zoom Schools target English Language Learners (ELLs); and Victory Schools focus on students living in poverty. However, these programs also share overlapping goals and will serve similar populations.

    There is significant overlap in the populations to be served by Zoom Schools and Victory Schools. This figure reveals that both programs serve higher percentages of ELLs than the statewide average, even though only Zoom Schools are targeted at ELLs. Similarly, the low-income student population served by both educational programs exceeds the statewide average, even though only Victory Schools focus on poverty. The figure shows that Zoom Schools actually have higher rates of low-income students than Victory Schools. The schools that will receive Read by 3 funds have not yet been determined, but these schools will also likely include significant populations of ELL and low-income students.

    Source: Nevada Department of Education, Nevada Report Card

  • There is also substantial overlap in the race and ethnicity of populations served by Zoom and Victory Schools. The percentage of Latino students is markedly higher than the statewide average for both Zoom and Victory Schools. In contrast, the percentage of white students is far lower than the statewide average for both Zoom Schools and Victory Schools. There are also some key differences in the populations served by these programs. Victory Schools have larger percentages of African American and Native American students than Zoom Schools and the state as a whole.

    Source: Nevada Department of Education, Nevada Report Card

  • The Zoom School program began in the 2013-2015 biennium with an investment of $50 million. Funding was provided to schools with high ELL populations and low academic achievement in the Clark County School District (CCSD) and the Washoe County School District (WCSD). Rural school districts and charter schools also received Zoom grants. The Nevada Legislature doubled funding to $100 million for the 2015-2017 biennium. A total of 44 Zoom Schools have been identified for 2015-2017. This includes 29 schools in CCSD and 15 schools in WCSD.

    The 44 Zoom Schools were historically low-performing and there have been various other efforts to improve student achievement at these schools. For example, eight schools have been placed in the Acceleration Zone in WCSD, one school in CCSD is part of Las Vegas Downtown Achieves, and one school in CCSD is an Empowerment School. There has also been a substantial investment of Federal funds in these schools. All Zoom Schools received Title I funding in FY 2015, three have received School Improvement Grants, and 14 have received Striving Readers grant funds.  In addition, 14 of these schools are on NDE’s list of underperforming schools because they have been identified as Focus Schools, Priority Schools, or have one star under the Nevada School Performance Framework.

  • The Victory Schools initiative is new for the 2015-2017 biennium. The Legislature approved $50 million over the biennium to target schools with high levels of poverty and low levels of student achievement. The Nevada Department of Education has identified 35 Victory Schools.

    Many of the 35 Victory Schools have been low-performing for many years and have been subject to myriad efforts to improve student achievement. For example, 16 of the 19 Victory Schools in CCSD have been targeted by one or more of the following local initiatives: Turnaround Zone, Prime 6, My Brother’s Keeper, Downtown Achieves, and Empowerment Schools. There has also been a substantial investment of Federal funds in these schools. All Victory Schools received Title I funding in FY 2015, two have received School Improvement Grants, and 12 have received Striving Readers grant funds.  In addition, 14 of these schools are on NDE’s list of underperforming schools because they have been identified as Focus Schools, Priority Schools, or have one star under the Nevada School Performance Framework.

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