For East Jefferson schools, a fight to meet standards
By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News
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But they made some major improvements from the 2010-2011 school year, according to a report issued by the state Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.
In June, students in third through eighth grades took the Measurements of Student Progress exams in math and reading, fourth- and seventh-grade students’ writing abilities were measured, and fifth- and eighth-grade students were tested in science.
End-of-course exams in algebra, geometry and biology are a new state high school graduation requirement, replacing the High School Proficiency Exam in those subjects.
Students in the classes of 2013 and 2014 must pass the proficiency exam in reading, writing and mathematics.
Beginning with the class of 2015, students must pass all five exams to graduate.
Detailed reports for each district are available at the OSPI website, http://reportcard.ospi.k12.wa.us.
Students in the Port Townsend School District met or exceeded state standards at rates higher than state averages in 12 of 21 grade levels and subjects.
Port Townsend High School students passed at a rate that exceeded state averages in four of five exams required for graduation.
They passed the reading exam at a rate of 90.1 percent. A total of 92.8 percent passed the writing exam, 74.6 passed the algebra exam, and 73.8 percent passed the biology exam.
In geometry, 72.6 passed the exam, short of the state average of 79.1.
At the elementary and middle school levels, student achievement was at or near state averages in most subjects, with improvements in the percentage of students meeting standards in fourth-grade writing and in fifth- and eighth-grade science.
Students in the Chimacum School District met standards at a rate above the state average in only two subjects — fifth-grade reading and high school biology — but showed dramatic improvement on eight exams compared with results from 2011 exams.
Many of the improvements were in math, where the school district is using a new program in which students are assessed three times a year on whether they have mastered the recent sections, Superintendent Craig Downs said.
If they have not, students are tutored in the area where they are having the most difficulty, Downs said.
The results were immediate.
In fifth-grade math, 78 percent of students met 2012 reading standards. In 2011, only 51.5 percent of those students, as fourth-graders, met standards.
Similar improvements were seen in fifth- and eighth-grade science, seventh-grade math and eighth-grade reading.
At the high school level, 72.1 percent of students passed the reading exam, 75.6 passed writing, 65.2 percent passed algebra, 69.7 passed geometry, and 75 percent passed biology.
Quilcene students exceeded state averages in four categories: fifth-grade science, eighth-grade reading and in the high school algebra and geometry end-of-course exams.
At the high school, 80 percent passed the reading exam, 68 percent passed writing, 73.3 percent passed algebra, 85.7 percent passed geometry, and 36 percent passed biology.
Brinnon School District
Brinnon School District is too small to be included in the state exam “report card,” with fewer than 40 students in the elementary-only district.
Students in the Sequim School District — which includes part of the Jefferson County community of Gardiner — met standards in 14 of 21 categories, exceeding the state average by more than 10 percent in three categories and by more than 5 percent in an additional five categories.
Fifth-grade Sequim students excelled in the reading and science exams, meeting or exceeding standards by more than 10 percent above state averages.
The fifth-graders also exceeded state writing averages.
In six categories, students improved their passing rates over 2011’s, with significant improvements in fifth- and eighth-grade math and reading scores.
In reading, Sequim fifth-grade students met standards at a rate of 81.8 percent and in science at 80.5 percent.
Sixth-graders struggled in math, as 50 percent met the standards and 11.4 percent fell below the state average.
End-of-course exam passing rates were 76.1 percent for algebra, 89.9 percent for geometry, 58.6 in biology, 80.2 in reading and 80.9 in writing.
Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last modified: September 04. 2012 5:57PM