Third grade reading scores from the latest round of Colorado’s standardized tests were released today. On average, proficiency rates dropped by about 1 point.
Here’s a roundup of some of the reaction from individual school districts from around the state. We’ll update this post as more districts respond to their scores.
Denver Public Schools Superintendent Tom Boasberg said its essential for the state’s largest school district to accelerate reading proficiency. After four years of gains in third grade reading scores, however, the district lost one point.
“Third-grade reading is a key benchmark of elementary literacy, and I am concerned and disappointed that the proportion of our kids at grade level in third-grade dropped this year. Because being able to read well in elementary school is a critical step in preparing students for middle and high school and beyond, it is essential that we work with our students to see greater improvements in reading.”
School officials and students are celebrating in Sheridan Schools, southwest of Denver. Fort Logan Elementary School principal Barbara Johnson said the school gained 18 percentage points over last year’s scores because of a “relentless” dedication to literacy.
“We have been closely following the progress of these students throughout the year and they have shown remarkable growth. We decided as a group we would do whatever it takes to ensure that no child fails. We adjusted staff and adult schedules to meet the needs of individual students and we referenced data on a nearly daily basis to ensure that the instruction matched the needs. The bottom line is its quality teaching every day—that’s the X-factor.”
Adams 50 Superintendent Pam Swanson is touting the fact the Westminster metro-area school district that has shown gains four years in a row.
“These results are very exciting for us, because they confirm that our move to a competency based system is paying off. We still have a lot of work ahead of us, but four consecutive years of growth show that our requirement that every child fully understand a learning target before moving to the next level was the right decision for our children.”
Meanwhile, Peter Hilts, the chief education officer in Falcon School District 49 in Colorado Springs, has pledged to get to the bottom of why the district saw a five point drop.
“Although our district remains above the Colorado average, these scores reinforce our urgency to deliver improved outcomes for our students. We know that leadership transitions in our schools, and at the district level, have been disruptive. For that reason, we’re prioritizing leadership as a foundation for academic performance. I am grateful for the hard work of our students, families and teachers. We, as district leaders, will honor their efforts by providing clear direction, targeted resources and relentless support.”
Chris Fiedler, superintendent of the Brighton 27J School District said his team is pleased his students’ results match the state average.
“As always, this data will give us the opportunity to celebrate our successes and also look for opportunities to continue to improve. We thank our third-grade students and teachers for their hard work this spring. This is just one piece of testing data and we look forward to the full release of TCAP testing results in August to provide us a wider picture of how our students did.”