Portion of students found proficient in English and math drop, remain above state averages

PMG FILE PHOTO - Results from the state's Smarter Balanced assessment showed scores at the West Linn-Wilsonville School District (shown here) declined last year.Students in the West Linn-Wilsonville School District scored above state averages on the Smarter Balanced assessment in the last school year, according to data released by the state in September.

Throughout the district, 72.1% of students who took the test received scores of proficient on the English test. On the math test, 58.9% of test-takers received scores of proficient.

Statewide, only 53.4% of test-takers scored proficient on the English test and 39.4% scored proficient on the math test.

The district English language arts proficiency rate was 1.3% lower than the prior academic year, but still higher than the year before that. Math dropped 2.6%. Statewide, rates dropped more than a percentage point in both subjects.

The states tests students at certain grade levels so scores from third graders this year, for example, are a different group of students than those tested the year before.

At many schools, scores dropped compared to the previous year, but were closer to the scores of two years prior. For example, at Sunset Primary School, the most recent math proficiency scores were 11.4% lower than the 2017-18 scores, but were equal to the 2016-17 score of 70.8%.

At Bolton Primary School, English test proficiency rates dropped 4.2% and math dropped 8.3%.

For Athey Creek Middle School, English scores dropped 4.4% and math scores dropped 5.3% from the prior year.

Math scores dropped at both West Linn and Wilsonville high schools. West Linn proficiency rates dropped 8.3% to 64.1%, while Wilsonville dropped 4.3% to 51.8%. The smaller Arts and Technology High School small size meant there was little data to draw on.

Some schools saw improvements on scores overall, including Boeckman Creek Primary School, Cedaroak Park Primary School and Willamette Primary School.

Meridian Creek Middle School, which opened in fall 2017, saw significant improvements in both subjects from the 2017-18 test.

Three Rivers Charter School had some of the highest scores in the district, with 91% proficiency in English and 94.6% proficiency in math.

The remaining middle schools in the district saw proficiency rates fall, though many were still higher than scores from two years prior.

"Smarter Balanced data is one of many important assessments that the West Linn-Wilsonville School District uses to improve instruction," a district news release said. "At the high school level, school leaders also look at graduation rates, course grades, Advanced Placement course participation, Advanced Placement results, and participation relative to courses of study."

The Smarter Balanced assessments were first administered in Oregon schools in 2015. The tests are aligned with Common Core standards and, according to a state fact sheet, differ from previous tests in that they include more than just multiple-choice questions.

The state also provided data breakdowns of scores for English language learners, students with disabilities, economically disadvantaged students, and by gender and race or ethnicity, for each grade, school, district, and state-wide.

That data is available on the state website.

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