August 31, 2010 in City, Region

Washington student test scores are mixed

Associated Press
 

Student assessment scores from spring tests were mixed, Washington state officials said today.

These were the first results of the shorter tests that replaced the unpopular Washington State Learning Assessment exam. The new tests are called the High School Proficiency Exam and the Measurements of Student Progress tests.

“I want you to know we are in a transition phase,” said Randy Dorn, the state’s superintendent of public instruction. “I we believe it went well and it will go better next year.”

For Spokane Public Schools, scores dropped in math, reading and writing for all grades, but improved in science. Only 38.7 percent of sophomores passed the state assessment, which alarms officials because the class of 2013 will all have to pass standardized math tests in order to graduate.

“Math is a struggle for districts across the state and nation, particularly at the secondary level where the differences between Spokane and state scores were not statistically significant,” said Terren Roloff, spokeswoman for the district. “Part of the problem in Washington is changing standards (three times in the last five or six years) that result in changing curriculum.

The district is hopeful that consistent state standards as well as training for the new curriculum will result “in improvement next year.”

Here are some statewide highlights:

Percentage of students who met standards:

—Third grade: reading, 72 percent; mathematics, 61.7 percent.

—Fourth grade: reading, 67.1 percent; mathematics, 53.6 percent; writing, 61 percent.

—Fifth grade: reading, 69.5 percent; mathematics: 53.6 percent; science: 34 percent.

—Sixth grade: reading, 64.5 percent; mathematics, 51.8 percent.

—Seventh grade: reading, 63.3 percent; mathematics, 55.2 percent; writing, 70.2 percent.

—Eighth grade: reading, 69.2 percent; mathematics, 51.5 percent; science, 54.4 percent.

—10th grade: reading, 78.8 percent; mathematics, 41.6 percent; writing, 85.9 percent; science, 44.7 percent.

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