The Edgartown School can rest easy for the moment.

Numbers released by the state Department of Education last week show that the school passed its annual yearly progress (AYP) requirement on the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) test in both English language arts and mathematics. This means that the state will not be stepping in to take corrective action.

Now it’s the West Tisbury School and the Oak Bluffs School that must focus on bringing up their test scores next year. The two schools did not meet their AYP in English this year.

“There’s no penalty, there’s no punishment, because everyone’s allowed to not make it once,” Vineyard schools superintendent Dr. James H. Weiss said this week. “The goal of the target is to have everyone at 100 per cent by 2014. As much as we like to think every youngster will make annual yearly progress, that’s not realistic, that’s not the world,” he added.

The Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School, the public charter school, Chilmark and Tisbury schools all met progress requirements in math and English. The Tisbury School was also singled out for being one of two schools in the state to show dramatic improvement in science, a test section that does not yet count toward AYP.

The state steps in when a school does not meet its AYP in any section for two or more consecutive years. The Edgartown School did not make AYP in math last year — the first elementary school on the Island not to make AYP on either section.

The data released for grades three to eight and grade 10 last Friday is preliminary. It tells whether or not a school met its required annual progress and gives a score called the composite performance index (CPI) — a 100-point index that averages the students’ scores, which are restricted to 100, 75, 50, 25 and zero. More detailed information will be released next week.

On Wednesday, the state also released detailed results for last year’s 10th grade class. The data shows that 10th grade students at the regional high school continue to improve in English, with scores well above the state average. Tenth grade math scores are down slightly from last year and show a relatively flat trend over the last four years, but math scores are still significantly higher than the state average.

Each year the bar is raised for schools across Massachusetts and the nation. Most administrators openly acknowledge that it is only a matter of time before every school fails to meet its required annual progress. Even high-scoring schools will plateau in terms of improvement, and the bar will continue to rise. In 2013 the bar is raised to 100 per cent for both math and English.

School-wide scores in both West Tisbury and Oak Bluffs this year exceeded state expectations, but the schools still failed because of student subgroups that did not score high enough.

In Oak Bluffs, those subgroups were special education, low income and Hispanic. In West Tisbury, there was only one subgroup — special education. Subgroups are only counted if they include 20 or more students.

“In English, our special education subgroup did not make AYP, but overall, schools are ranked in performance terms such as critically low, very low, low, moderate, high, very high. We’re proud of the fact the West Tisbury school has earned a performance rating of very high in English language arts,” West Tisbury School principal Michael Halt said yesterday. “The results have shown we need to do more to help our special ed kids pass this test,” he added.

But the school has a good track record for improvement, Mr. Halt said.

“It’s a challenging test, but we’ve shown we’ll use these results to improve instruction,” he said. “We’re known for the services we provide to our special ed kids. Talking with our teachers, talking with our parents, they are very proud of the work we do with our special ed kids.”

Last year at this time, the school had flat marks in math and a math ranking of moderate. Before Mr. Halt left for military duty — he is a lieutenant colonel in the United States Marine Corps Reserves — he asked the staff to work on raising the math scores.

“As a result our performance rating in math was high and our improvement rating was above target,” he said. “I think that illustrates how good our teachers are.”

Oak Bluffs School principal Carlin Hart also pointed out that his school’s scores are high overall. Oak Bluffs also received a rating of very high in English. But in terms of improvement, English scores dropped school-wide from 2006.

“If you look at that [CPI] percentage, I think we’re at 91.3, and for us to continuallly go up is going to be hard,” Mr. Hart said. “What we try to tell the parents is this is just one snapshot of what our school is doing. There’s so much else that’s going on in our school. The last thing we want to do is teach to the test. We don’t want it, the kids don’t want it and the parents don’t want it.”

But Mr. Hart believes the Oak Bluffs school will be able to improve performance in the subgroups, which range in size from 45 to 57 students.

“We’ll get together and we’ll fix this,” he said. “Eventually you’re going to hit a plateau and you’re not going to see the improvement. I think that’s what everyone’s struggling with.”

The Edgartown School’s overall math score was lower than the state’s target, but the school still met AYP because it showed adequate improvement from last year. Its overall math score rose from 67.5 in 2006 to 74.8 in 2007; each subgroup improved too.

“People worked very hard last year under the leadership of Dr. [Paul] Dulac, so he needs credit, but the staff needs credit too,” Edgartown School principal John Stevens said this week. “The teachers work hard, they pulled through. Not only did they work hard in the classroom, there were a lot of neat things that happened after hours — tutorials, math nights.”

This doesn’t mean the school will relax its efforts, he said.

“We’re going to celebrate our success but we’re going to continue to try to improve,” Mr. Stevens said. “We still have work to do, clearly. We talk about that every day.”

Overall and in every subgroup, each school in Massachusetts must meet the state’s target for performance, improvement or both in order to meet AYP. Failing to meet both performance and improvement targets means not making AYP.

Every Island elementary school had a subgroup that failed to meet the state’s performance target — except the Chilmark School and charter school, whose subgroups are too small to measure. But adequate improvement in the subgroups allowed the schools to meet their AYP.

In contrast, the regional high school’s special education subgroup scored well above the state’s performance target, but the performance did not improve from last year.

The state also requires schools to meet targets for test participation, school attendance (for elementary schools) and graduation rates (for high schools). Island schools met these targets easily.

Every year, school administrators and teachers spend long hours analyzing the subject areas and individual questions that their students got wrong, in an effort to find holes in the curriculum and make appropriate adjustments. This year, the school system’s new assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, Laurie Halt, is consolidating all of that research into a single location online.

“When we pull the report together, we can really work as a district,” Mrs. Halt said. The public will have access to the information and the schools will be able to collaborate on professional development or share resources.