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Why are student test scores dropping?   ADVERTISEMENT

Why are student test scores dropping?

TRI-COUNTY AREA—The New York Education Department released the math and English language arts test results this month for grades three through eight. Following a year of new curriculum mandates, area districts and the state had at least 69 percent of students fall below the proficiency standards.
The ELA and math tests are held annually for students in grades three through eight. With the change to common core standards, the state education department Commissioner John King Jr. is telling parents more students struggled on this year’s tests than in previous years. In an open letter to parents he added, “Common Core assessments cannot be compared with last year’s proficiency results since the old scores are from an old test based on the former standards.”
As a result, 69 percent of students statewide did not meet the proficiency standards for both math and ELA. The student results are broken down into four levels: level 1 is well below proficiency, level 2 is below proficiency, level 3 meets proficiency, and level 4 exceeds proficiency. According to the state, 69 percent of students in the state fell within the first two levels.
In the area, 74 percent of Penn Yan ELA students and 78 percent of math students did not meet the proficiency standards. In Dundee, 81 percent of ELA and 83 percent of math students also fell below the standards. In Hammondsport, the numbers were 71 percent in ELA and 79 percent in math.
For Watkins Glen 73 percent of ELA students did not meet the proficiency requirements while for math it was 79 percent. At Odessa-Montour 77 percent of students fell below the standards in ELA and 83 percent in math.
Dundee Superintendent Kathy Ring said, “the test results are definitely down this year and we anticipated that.” She explained the assessment has changed, but Dundee has only started implementing the new standards in the classroom.
“While the scores are disappointing, they are what they are. It’s new baseline data,” said Ring.
In the Aug. 12 issue of “On Board,”published by the New York School Boards Association, NYSSBA Executive Director Timothy Kremer New York adopted the new federally mandated common core standards one year early, accelerating the timeline. He said this resulted in implementation issues and hampered districts’ abilities to prepare students.
“And many of our schools began implementing these reforms during a time of severe budget cuts,” said Kremer.





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