Los Angeles County students showed slight improvement in math and English testing compared to last year, and they performed roughly on par with their counterparts from across the state, according to results released Wednesday by the California Department of Education.
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said California students overall showed improvement on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress, which was implemented last year to reflect new Common Core standards, replacing the previous Standardized Testing and Reporting Program.
The CAASPP online tests were administered in the spring to more than 3.2 million students across the state in grades 3-8 and 11.
In Los Angeles County, 18 percent of the more than 770,000 students who took the tests exceeded the state standard in English, up from 15 percent last year. According to the test results, 28 percent met the English standard, up from 27 percent in 2015, and 24 percent “nearly” met it, down from 26 percent the previous year.
In math, 15 percent of county students exceeded the standard, up from 12 percent last year, while 20 percent met the standard and 28 percent nearly met it — compared to 19 percent and 29 percent, respectively, from 2015.
Statewide, 20 percent of students exceeded the standard in English, while 29 percent met the standard, 24 percent nearly met it and 28 percent did not meet it. In math, 17 percent exceeded the standard, while 20 percent met it and 28 percent nearly met it and 35 percent failed to meet it.
“The higher test scores show that the dedication, hard work and patience of California’s teachers, parents, school employees and administrators are paying off,” Torlakson said. “Together we are making progress towards upgrading our educational system to prepare all students for careers and college in the 21st Century.”
In the Los Angeles Unified School District, 14 percent of students exceeded the state standard in English, and 25 percent met it, up from 10 percent and 23 percent, respectively, in 2015. Twenty-five percent of students nearly met the standard, down from 26 percent last year, while 36 percent failed to meet it, down from 41 percent last year.
In math, 11 percent of LAUSD students exceeded the state standard, while 17 percent met it, 28 percent nearly met it and 43 percent failed to meet it. Last year, just 9 percent exceeded the standard, 16 percent met it, 28 percent nearly met it and 47 percent failed to meet it.
“I am very proud that, across the district, our schools showed gains in every grade level, and that scores increased for each subgroup as well,” LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King said. “Even as we commend the progress we have made, me must recommit ourselves to the achievement of all students. We are still working to close the achievement gap and to provide the resources to help our disadvantaged students succeed.”
In Orange County, students performed significantly better than in Los Angeles, with 27 percent exceeding the standard in English and 30 percent meeting it, 21 percent nearly meeting it and 22 percent failing to meet it. In math, 25 percent exceeded the standard and 23 percent met it, while 26 percent nearly met it and 27 percent failed to meet the standard. Those numbers were all slight improvements over last year.
Torlakson noted that the statewide test results continued to show an achievement gap, with 37 percent of Latino students and 31 percent of black students meeting or exceeding standards in English, compared to 64 percent of white students.
“The achievement gap is pernicious and persistent, and we all need to work together to find solutions that help all groups rise, while narrowing the gap,” he said.
—City News Service