MSDE Issues Report Card; Worcester Schools Rank 3rd

MSDE Issues Report Card; Worcester Schools Rank 3rd
The Maryland State Department of Education issued its first update to school performance data since 2019 last week. The star rating of Worcester County schools is pictured above. Submitted Image

NEWARK – School by school performance data is now available thanks to an update to the Maryland Report Card website.

The Maryland State Department of Education released its first update since 2019 to the Maryland Report Card website late last week.

The site contains performance data for every school in the state. Local officials say the results show Worcester County Public Schools again performed well compared to facilities throughout the state.

“I am very proud to report that our schools continue to perform well in Maryland’s accountability system,” said Superintendent of Schools Lou Taylor. “This report card release is the first since before the COVID-19 pandemic, and it is clear that while we certainly have much to celebrate, there is a lot of work ahead of us.”

In Worcester County, officials said 90% of eligible schools earned a rating of four or five stars. For comparison, only 48% of all school types in Maryland reached four- or five-star status.

Worcester’s concentration of four- and five-star schools is the third highest in the state, following Garrett and Queen Anne’s counties.

In this year’s data release, Ocean City Elementary School’s rating increased from four- to five-star status, and Showell Elementary School, which was previously not eligible for stars, joined Buckingham Elementary at the four-star level.

All middle schools across the county reached four-star status, as well as both Pocomoke and Snow Hill High Schools. Stephen Decatur High School fell 0.7 percentage points shy of reaching four-star status. The school received 59.29 points out of a possible 100 points.

To receive a star rating, a school must have 45 or more possible points. Schools achieve five starts when they’ve got at least 75% of total points.

Some schools may not have possible points for every measure or indicator. In Worcester County, Pocomoke Elementary and Snow Hill Elementary Schools did not reach this possible point threshold, which is why the schools were not issued a star rating.

Additionally, Worcester Technical High School and Cedar Chapel Special School do not meet the qualifications for a star rating. These scores reflect school performance on multiple components. For elementary and middle schools, the system includes academic achievement, academic progress, progress in achieving English language proficiency, and measures of school quality and student success.

For high schools, the system includes academic achievement, graduation rate, progress in English language proficiency, readiness for postsecondary success, and measures of school quality and student success. All schools’ calculations incorporate school composite scores on a statewide school survey, which is based on input related to safety, community, environment, and relationships.

Maryland introduced the School Report Card system in 2018 so students, parents, educators and community members could better understand how their schools are performing, just as report cards help parents understand how their kids are doing. The goal of the School Report Card is to bring together school data in an easy-to-understand and usable format to help us ask questions, find answers, make decisions, and act.

Individual school reports can be found on the Maryland Report Card website, along with more information and data about schools and districts. This information can be found at: An update on the latest release of the Maryland School Report Card was made to the Maryland State Board of Education on February 28. The presentation materials for the meeting, which provide statewide context to Worcester County’s performance, can be found at

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.