Camden-Rockport Elementary School (previously Rockport Elementary School) students have performed the best among Midcoast schools in math and reading during the past three years while students at three area high schools have performed below the state average.

Those are the findings from the Maine School Achievement and Progress List released March 30 by the Maine Department of Education. The list was used to determine which schools would be eligible for federal money. No local schools were on the list of the 10 persistently low-achieving schools in the state that would have made them eligible for about $1 million each.

But three of the local high schools scored well below the state average. Georges Valley High School in Thomaston was ranked 41st from the bottom on the percentage of students who met or exceeded the standards in the past three years in math and reading tests. Medomak Valley High School in Waldoboro was ranked 66th from the bottom and Rockland District High School was 69th from the bottom.

There are 557 schools on the list. Twenty-five are from the local region (Lincolnville to Waldoboro).

The best performing school in the region was Camden-Rockport Elementary School, which saw 80 percent of its students perform at or above the standards.

At Georges Valley, only 38 percent of students met or exceeded the math and reading standards.

The state average was 59 percent.

“We are very concerned about Georges Valley High School results, especially since the trend is steadily downward,” said Regional School Unit 13 Superintendent Judy Lucarelli. “Results at both high schools [Georges Valley and Rockland] were a significant cause for the decision to change how we do high school.”

The RSU 13 board voted in February to combine the high schools starting in September 2011. The plan calls for the eighth and ninth grades to be at the Thomaston building and the sophomores, juniors and seniors to be at the Rockland building.

There has been opposition from some residents and staff, particularly from St. George. Some citizens have asked the board to schedule an advisory referendum on the consolidation. One item on the RSU 13 agenda for Thursday, April 1 is whether to hold such a referendum. The meeting is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. at the McLain School in Rockland and will be broadcast live on educational access Channel 11.

“While these tests are just one indicator of what students are learning, they provide the basis for comparison statewide,” Lucarelli said. “How students perform on the test — the SAT [Scholastic Aptitude Test] — gives them an indication of likely success in college.”

Statewide, the three-year average scores in math and science range from a high of 97 percent of students at the Maine School of Science and Mathematics in Limestone meeting or exceeding standards to a low of 21 percent at Machias Memorial High School.

In addition to the three-year average, the state report released this week shows what progress or lack of progress students have made in the past three years.

The following are the results for local schools, showing the percentage of students who met or exceeded the standards set by the state, as well as what the change in the scores has been during the past three years. The schools are ranked from highest performing to lowest.

* Camden-Rockport Elementary School, 80 percent, down 3 percent.

* Hope Elementary School, 78 percent, up 9 percent.

* Camden-Rockport Middle School, 77 percent, up 4 percent.

* Owls Head Central School, 77 percent, up 3 percent.

* Friendship Village School, 75 percent, up 7 percent.

* Lura Libby School in Thomaston, 73 percent, down 8 percent.

* Cushing Community School, 69 percent, up 16 percent.

* Lincolnville Central School, 69 percent, up 8 percent.

* Appleton Village School, 66 percent, up 6 percent.

* St. George School, 61 percent, up 17 percent.

* Islesboro Central School, 61 percent, down 13 percent.

* Union Elementary School, 60 percent, unchanged.

* South School in Rockland, 59 percent, up 1 percent.

State average, 59 percent, up 4 percent.

* Vinalhaven School, 59 percent, up 1 percent.

* North Haven Community School, 58 percent, down 16 percent.

* Warren Community School, 57 percent, up 4 percent.

* Camden Hills Regional High School, 56 percent, up 11 percent.

* Thomaston Grammar School, 55 percent, up 9 percent.

* Rockland District Middle School, 55 percent, up 10 percent.

* Monhegan Island School, 55 percent, up 18 percent.

* Prescott Memorial School in Washington, 54 percent, up 12 percent.

* Miller School in Waldoboro, 50 percent, up 3 percent.

* Rockland District High School, 42 percent, up 9 percent.

* Medomak Valley High School, 42 percent, up 3 percent.

* Georges Valley High School, 38 percent, down 12 percent.

The tests were given to students in grades three through eight and to juniors. The MacDougal School in Rockland and Gilford Butler School in South Thomaston are not listed because their students are younger and not given those tests.
Medomak Middle School in Waldoboro is not included in the list because it does not have three years of statistics. The Medomak Middle School opened in September 2008.
On the state Web site, the department said the scores are not a ranking of schools and are not intended to be used for comparison purposes.
“It contains data on one measure only and was prepared initially only as a tool for identifying 10 persistently low-achieving schools that would be eligible for a share of $12 million in U.S. Department of Education School Improvement Grants,” according to the state.
The state released the list only after receiving Freedom of Information requests from schools and legislators.