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Edmonds-Woodway students beat state averages in math, English

But only 15% of 11th grade students met science standards


Last updated 9/26/2019 at 12:02pm

The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) recently released results for the statewide Smarter Balanced Assessments (SBA) taken in the 2018-19 school year. The statewide assessment results are just one look into how the K-12 system is serving Washington’s students.

This year’s results show scores are remaining stable, but far from optimal. At Edmonds-Woodway High School, 11th-grade results in science testing were dismal.

“Stability can be a double-edged sword,” said Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal. “On one hand, it means our educational system is maintaining the gains we have made. On the other, it means achievement gaps between student groups are continuing to persist.”

For students, their assessment results are used by their teachers, counselors, parents, and families as one of multiple measures of their academic progress. Beginning with the class of 2020, the statewide assessments in math and English language arts taken in the 10th grade can also be used as one of eight pathways to graduation.

Students in grades 3-8 and in grade 10 took the SBA in English language arts (ELA) and math. Students in grades 5, 8, and 11 also took the Washington Comprehensive Assessment of Science (WCAS).

In the Edmonds School District, 52.1% of students met math standards; 63.1% met English language arts (ELA) standards; and 44.3% met science standards.

At Edmonds-Woodway High School, the numbers were 52.8% for math, 78% for ELA, and 15% for science.

At Meadowdale High School, the numbers were 45.3% for math, 77.5% for ELA, and 41.6% for science.

State numbers: 48.9% in math, 59.6% in ELA, and 46.7% in science.

To see the full list of schools, go to washingtonstatereportcard.ospi.k12.wa.us/.

“A critical step toward improvement is ensuring we have a system of support in place for students not yet experiencing success,” said Robert Baumgartner, executive director of student learning for the Edmonds School District.

“We are developing a plan to implement a multi-tiered system of support (k12.wa.us/multi-tiered-system-supports-mtss) which, stated most simply, is a service delivery model focusing on prevention and intervention for all students. This will allow us to design and implement research-based protocols to identify students needing additional support and then making sure they receive that support.”

Closely related to this is the district's work, he said, to provide teachers with updated, standards-aligned instructional materials and the training to use these materials most effectively.

“Many of our materials are way out of date, but we are taking steps to remedy this. At the end of this school year, we will have adopted new science curriculum for K-12 and added new elementary reading materials. We have an extensive five-year plan to continue these improvements.”

Baumgartner said the district hopes to complete an adoption process to identify a comprehensive assessment system that will give it more precise data on how students are progressing through the school year.

“An additional important step is our revised school improvement planning process,” he said. “Each school's leadership team has led in a year-long process with their staff to identify those areas they most need to improve to raise their students' achievement. By deeply investigating what's been successful and what has not, school staff are much better positioned to choose the highest leverage strategies for improvement. This shift is just underway, but is showing great promise.”

According to Reykdal, the statewide assessments are an important way of measuring system progress, and they are also a significant component of the Washington School Improvement Framework, the tool the state uses to see which schools need the most support.

The assessments used in Washington are among the most rigorous in the nation, Reykdal said.

“This is evident when comparing results of the statewide assessments to those on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), a representative survey of student achievement nationwide,” he said.

“NAEP results from 2017 show Washington’s students continually perform near the top in national comparisons.”


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