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Report: Fewer Mass. Public Schools Earn Top Rating

The number of Massachusetts public schools securing the top ranking under the state's rating system has dropped significantly.

This year, 424 schools received the Level 1 rating, down from 510 schools two years ago, when the state introduced the five-tier rating system for school performance.

The Boston Globe reports that the schools that have dropped aren't seeing lower MCAS scores, but instead are being tripped up by a requirement demanding gains from students who have lagged furthest behind.

Schools must cut in half gaps in achievement among students of different racial, academic, or socioeconomic backgrounds by 2017.

Schools must demonstrate progress each year in reaching that goal to attain the top rating. The requirement applies to both MCAS scores and high school dropout rates.

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