San Diego County students showed across-the-board gains in math and English testing compared to last year, and they out-performed their counterparts from across the state, according to results released Wednesday by the California Department of Education.
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said California students overall showed improvement on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress, which was implemented last year to reflect new Common Core standards, replacing the previous Standardized Testing and Reporting Program.
The CAASPP online tests were administered in the spring to more than 3.2 million students across the state in grades 3-8 and 11.
In San Diego County, 25 percent of the more than 250,000 students who took the tests exceeded the state standard in English, up from 21 percent last year. According to the test results, 31 percent met the English standard, up from 30 percent in 2015, and 22 percent “nearly” met it, down from 24 percent the previous year.
In math, 21 percent of county students exceeded the standard, up from 18 percent last year, while 23 percent met the standard and 28 percent nearly met it — compared to 22 percent and 28 percent, respectively, from 2015.
Statewide, 20 percent of students exceeded the standard in English, while 29 percent met the standard, 24 percent nearly met it and 28 percent did not meet it. In math, 17 percent exceeded the standard, while 20 percent met it and 28 percent nearly met it and 35 percent failed to meet it.
“The higher test scores show that the dedication, hard work and patience of California’s teachers, parents, school employees and administrators are paying off,” Torlakson said. “Together we are making progress towards upgrading our educational system to prepare all students for careers and college in the 21st Century.”
Torlakson noted that the statewide test results continued to show an achievement gap, with 37 percent of Latino students and 31 percent of black students meeting or exceeding standards in English, compared to 64 percent of white students.
“The achievement gap is pernicious and persistent, and we all need to work together to find solutions that help all groups rise, while narrowing the gap,” he said.
San Diego County’s largest district, San Diego Unified, ranked first in English and second in math among the state’s major school systems. In English, 57 percent met or exceeded standards in English, a 6 percent increase, and in math, 45 percent met expectations, a 4 percent improvement.
“As parents and educators, we know our students achieve more when we ask more from them,” said Superintendent Cindy Marten.
“We saw that with our strong graduation results and we have seen it again today with these impressive test results,” Marten said. “San Diego can feel very proud of our students, parents and teachers based on the hard work reflected in these new test results.”
In the Poway Unified School District, 76 percent of students met or exceeded standards in English, as did 67 percent in math. The results were an improvement of 3 percent and 2 percent, respectively, over last year, according to the district.
—City News Service
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