WASL results show CK schools above average

Hard work, extra classes, hours of studying and tutors paid off for schools in the Central Kitsap School District this year.

With Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) results just released by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), the percentage of students in every grade except fifth and eighth are above the state average in reading.

Results from WASL tests taken last spring showed reading and math scores were up in third and seventh grades, writing scores were up in fourth, seventh and 10th grades and the percentage of students meeting the reading standard exceeded that of the state at grades third-eighth and 10th.

“We’re above the state in meeting standard,” said CKSD Research and Evaluation Director Linda Elman.

Although reading and writing scores are up, math and science levels still present a concern. Meeting the standard on math and science portions of the WASL, however, will not be a graduation requirement until 2013 and CKSD staff and administrators are working hard now to prevent problems down the road.

To provide the help many students require to excel in the math and science portions, as well as those who did not meet thee standard on reading and writing, a variety of intervention programs have been created.

At the elementary and junior high school levels, extended learning opportunities are available throughout the school year. New math curriculum in high schools and junior highs are now more closely tied to the state’s grade level expectations and additional math classes have been added at the high school level to assist students who have yet to pass the math portion of the WASL. Summer school programs for the WASL also have been offered.

“As we review WASL results, the focus for Central Kitsap School District continues to be the individual student,” said CKSD Superintendent Greg Lynch. “By providing the best possible instruction within existing resources, our goal is for each student to reach high standards.”

Currently, students must meet the reading and writing standards of the WASL to graduate. Even though meeting the standard on math and science portions for WASL aren’t a requirement for graduation until 2013, high school students who have not passed the math portion are required to pass additional math courses and continue to take the WASL each year. Seniors in high school must earn one additional credit in math, juniors two additional credits.

The goals behind the WASL testing remain unchanged with a focus of all students, regardless of who they are and what they want to do after high school, need a solid foundation of reading, writing and math skills.

Elman said from the data released, although CK schools are above the state average, the trend in the overall results is fairly flat. She added that she wants to look into the patterns in ethnicities over results periods to see if there’s any closing of the gap in meeting the standards. She added that she also wants to look at how many kids met the standards last year, compared to how many did now.

“The big emphasis is how schools use this data to enhance student learning and how schools can plan for intervention and learning enhancement,” Elman added. “That’s now my focus.”

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