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Forsyth schools campus climates top average in state
Cole Schmoyer, a third-grader at Kelly Mill Elementary, heads back to class Tuesday afternoon. The school received a 5 on the recent School Climate Star Ratings released by the state. - photo by Micah Green

At a glance

The following are the ratings for Forsyth County’s schools”


Elementary schools

Big Creek — 5

Brookwood — 5

Chattahoochee — 4

Chestatee — 5

Coal Mountain — 5

Cumming — 5

Daves Creek — 5

Whitlow — 5

Haw Creek — 4

Johns Creek — 5

Kelly Mill — 5

Mashburn — 4

Matt — 5

Midway — 5

Sawnee — 5

Settles Bridge — 5

Sharon — 5

Shiloh Point — 5

Silver City — 5

Vickery Creek — 5



Middle schools

Lakeside — 5

Liberty — 5

Little Mill — 4

North Forsyth — 4

Otwell — 4

Piney Grove — 5

Riverwatch — 5

South Forsyth — 5

Vickery Creek — 4


High schools

Forsyth Central — 4

Lambert — 4

North Forsyth — 3

South Forsyth — 4

West Forsyth — 4

i-Achieve Academy — 5


Source: Forsyth County Schools

FORSYTH COUNTY — The state Department of Education released its first rating system that determines the quality and character of school life, and Forsyth County’s schools all scored at or above average.

School Climate Star Ratings are based on survey results and data from the 2013-14 school year. While the ratings — scored 1 through 5 — supplement each school’s College and Career Ready Performance Index, they do not affect that score, according to the state department.

These new ratings refer to the culture of a school. A sustainable, positive school climate fosters youth development and student learning, which are essential elements for academic success, career-skill improvement and overall quality of life.

“If your school has a positive climate, it’s giving students the environment they need to learn,” said State School Superintendent Richard Woods. “You’ll likely see high achievement there, or a school that’s on the right track toward high achievement.”

Five stars represents an excellent school climate, one star represents a school climate most in need of improvement, and three stars represents an average school climate.

“Forsyth County’s 35 schools all received a 3 or better on the rating,” said Jeff Bearden, Forsyth’s superintendent. “Twenty-three schools received 5’s, 11 schools received 4’s and one school received a 3.”

Bearden said the school system uses multiple processes to evaluate climate and culture on campuses.

The Georgia Assessment of Performance on School Standards provides data collected from stakeholder surveys and interviews and classroom observations.

“Another method that we use is our AdvancED district accreditation, which occurs every five years,” he said. “The data from these various methods, including the CCRPI climate star rating, is incorporated into each of our school’s continuous improvement process and annual school improvement plans.”

Ratings incorporated survey results from students, parents and personnel.

This year, those surveys have been extended through April 30.

Schools must have at least a 75 percent participation rate on the surveys from students and personnel to receive a score. If there are fewer than 15 parent responses, the schools will not be penalized, but those responses will not be included in the calculations.

Students complete their surveys in the classroom, said Jennifer Caracciolo, spokeswoman for the district.

Parent surveys can be accessed on the system’s website through