Statewide, there were gains in math, but reading scores were stagnant. At Racine Unified, scores are, again, below state averages, but district officials say students have made some gains. "One year of test data does not signify a trend," said Unified officials. "However, the results of the Fall 2009 state testing are encouraging."
According to figures from RUSD, students in four out of five grades improved their reading scores over last year, although all are below state averages. In math, three out of five improved, but all are below state averages. Here's the table of results Unified provided (click to enlarge):
A statement from Supt. James Shaw, Stephen Miller, director of Standards, Assessment, and Accountability, and Jeff Weiss, director of Curriculum and Instruction, says:
The fall 2009 WKCE results suggest that Racine Unified School District students are becoming better readers, writers, and problem-solvers. Overall, these results present a mixed picture of continuing achievement gaps along with some “early wins.”The state slices and dices the results many different ways. Here are comparisons of Unified's scores with some regional districts ("athletic conference") chosen by the state. (FAY stands for Full Academic Year.)
Achievement gaps persist for African-American and Hispanic students, as well as for economically disadvantaged students. However, the one-year change in mean scale scores in math (45.6 points) for grade 4 African-American RUSD students exceeded the growth of all other racial groups in RUSD over the same period. Additionally, there was growth in mean scale scores for all racial groups in both reading and math, although very modest among some groups at selected grades.
The biggest wins occurred in WKCE proficiency results for grade 3 reading and math with increases of five and four percentage points respectively. Equally encouraging wins were grades 6, 7, & 8 reading and math proficiency increases ranging as high as eight percentage points.
Want to find the results from a specific RUSD school? Go HERE.
Unified points out that the number of students living in poverty within the district continues to increase, which is perhaps no surprise in this economic downturn with City of Racine unemployment rates in double digits."We know that economically disadvantaged circumstances remain a factor in students’ readiness to learn," says the RUSD statement.
This school year, 62.3% of elementary, 56.8% of middle, and 44.3% of RUSD's high school students have been identified as economically disadvantaged (by their eligibility for subsidized lunch), compared to 57.7%, 52.1%, and 36.7% respectively last school year. The state's percentage is 37.2% eligible for subsidized lunch; last year the state figure was 33.6%.