Charles County PARCC scores mostly im­prove, trail state

Al­ge­bra I scores de­cline

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By JAMIE ANFENSON-COMEAU jan­fen­son-comeau@somd­news.com

More stu­dents in Charles County Pub­lic Schools met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions in as­sess­ments last year, but Charles County con­tin­ues to trail state av­er­ages.

The Mary­land State De­part­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion re­leased scores Tues­day af­ter­noon for dis­trict and school re­sults in the Part­ner­ship for As­sess­ment of Readi­ness for Col­lege and Ca­reers, or PARCC, as­sess­ment.

The PARCC was given to stu­dents for the sec­ond year last spring. PARCC re­places the Mary­land State As­sess­ment (MSA) and High School As­sess­ment (HSA) pre­vi­ously given.

“The PARCC re­sults pro­vide a valu­able tool that our ed­u­ca­tors can use to strengthen class­room in­struc­tion,” Karen Salmon, Mary­land su­per­in­ten­dent of schools, said in a news re­lease. “When com­bined with other as­sess­ment data and ev­i­dence of per­for­mance, teach­ers can tai­lor their ef­forts to in­di­vid­ual stu­dent needs.”

The PARCC as­sess­ment uses a five-point scale, with Level 1, the low­est score, rep­re­sent­ing Did Not Yet Meet Ex­pec­ta­tions, and Level 4 and 5 rep­re­sent­ing Met and Ex­ceeded Ex­pec­ta­tions, re­spec­tively. School scores are based on the per­cent­age of stu­dents scor­ing Level 4 or higher on the PARCC.

Over­all, 42.2 per­cent of CCPS high school stu­dents tak­ing the English/ Lan­guage Arts 10 exam scored Level 4 or higher, in­di­cat­ing they met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions on the exam. That is higher than 31 per­cent from last year, and close to the 44.4 per­cent state av­er­age.

On the Al­ge­bra I exam, 29.6 per­cent of stu­dents met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions, down from last year’s 31.2 per­cent and trail­ing the state’s 35.6 per­cent av­er­age.

On the Al­ge­bra II exam, 9.4 per­cent of CCPS stu­dents met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions, twice last year’s score of 4.7 per­cent but still well be­hind the state av­er­age of 26.8 per­cent.

On the English/Lan­guage Arts 11 exam, not ad­min­is­tered last year, 31.3 per­cent of stu­dents met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions, while 37.3 per­cent of stu­dent met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions statewide.

The PARCC dif­fers slightly from the old HSA in that the tests are given to stu­dents based on sub­ject, rather than grade level.

This means ad­vanced stu­dents tak­ing Al­ge­bra I in mid­dle school take the PARCC Al­ge­bra I test prior to at­tend­ing high school.

These num­bers from last spring’s test are the last with­out PARCC be­ing a grad­u­a­tion re­quire­ment. The Mary­land State Board of Ed­u­ca­tion an­nounced in April that be­gin­ning this school year, stu­dents must score at least 725 – the min­i­mum for Level 3, Ap­proach­ing Ex­pec­ta­tions – in both English 10 and Al­ge­bra I, or have a com­bined score of 1,450, to meet the grad­u­a­tion re­quire­ments.

The re­quire­ments will rise slightly each year un­til the 2019-2020 school year, when stu­dents must score at least 750 – the min­i­mum for Level 4 – in both English 10 and Al­ge­bra I, or have a com­bined score of 1500, to meet the grad­u­a­tion re­quire­ments.

Stu­dents who do not meet the re­quire­ments may re­take the tests, or they may meet the grad­u­a­tion re­quire­ments through al­ter­nate means, in­clud­ing scor­ing at a cer­tain level on the SAT, ACT, IB, or PARCC English 11 or Al­ge­bra II tests, or through the Bridge Plan for Aca­demic Val­i­da­tion, Mary­land’s project-based as­sess­ment.

Amongst CCPS el­e­men­try stu­dents, 36.4 per­cent met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions on the English/ Lan­guage Arts exam, up from 32 per­cent last year, but trail­ing the state score of 38.7 per­cent.

Like­wise, 33.1 per­cent of el­e­men­tary and mid­dle school stu­dents met or ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions on the math­e­mat­ics exam, up from 25.3 per­cent last year, but slightly be­hind the state av­er­age of 33.7 per­cent.

More de­tails can be found at www.mdreport­card.org.

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