INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Scores released Tuesday show Indiana students made modest gains on the state’s ISTEP tests this past school year and one South Bend school improved enough to avert a state takeover.
The state Education Department said that of the 500,000 students taking the standardized tests, 71 percent passed both the language arts and math sections — an improvement of 1 percentage point from last year and 8 percentage points better than four years ago.
The passing rate for each section improves when they are considered separately. Seventy-nine percent passed the language arts section, 1 percentage point more than last year. The pass rate for the math section improved by 2 percentage points to 81 percent.
Dickinson Fine Arts Academy in South Bend showed the most improvement of any middle school in the state, according to the Education Department. The school was placed on probation for four years and faced possible state takeover if it remained at that level for six consecutive years.
More students statewide also passed the science and social studies sections on the exam. The science exam pass rate rose by 2 percentage points to 71 percent, and the social studies test improved by the same amount to 69 percent passing.
Warsaw Community Schools
The newly released 2012 ISTEP+ results show a significant increase in the percentage of Warsaw Community School students passing both the English/language arts and the mathematics portions of the test.
In English/language arts, 84.1 percent of the students scored above the state proficiency cut. This is a 4.9 percent increase over the 2011 scores and 11.6% increase over the past four years. On the mathematics portion of the test the students had a very significant one year jump in scores. Their passing percentage of 83 percent surpasses last year’s scores by 6.8 points.
The four year increase in mathematics is a 7.6 percent jump.
The Indiana Department of Education’s new accountability system will give each corporation a letter from A-F grade. This system is dependent on both the percent of students surpassing the proficiency cut and yearly growth in scale score of each student. Chief Accountability Officer Tom Kline is very optimistic about the letter grade that WCS will earn this year, “The growth scores have not yet been figured by the state, but the number of students passing each portion of the ISTEP+ assessment assures WCS will earn a letter grade of at least a B. This is a full letter grade improvement over the 2011 grade.”
Wawasee Community School Corporation
Wawasee Community School Corp. had 78 percent of its students pass the English/language arts portion of the test, while 83.5 percent passed the math portion. A total of 72.3 percent passed both portions.
Those numbers are close to the spring 2011 results. A year ago, Wawasee had 79 percent pass English and language arts, 83.6 percent pass math and 73.5 percent pass both.
Looking at the numbers by each school shows more marked differences, though it should be noted fifth-graders during the 2010-11 academic year had moved on to middle school in 2011-12 and third-graders in 2011-12 were testing for the first time. North Webster Elementary had 79.3 percent pass English and language arts (85.2 percent in 2011), 83.8 percent pass math (90.4 percent in 2011) and 74.1 percent pass both (82.8 percent in 2011).
Wawasee Middle School had 73.2 percent pass English and language arts (75 percent a year ago), 80.2 percent pass math (75.9 percent a year ago) and 67.3 percent pass both (66.8 percent a year ago).
Milford School had 80.7 percent pass English and language arts (77.4 percent in 2011), 86.2 percent pass math (85.7 percent in 2011) and 76.3 percent pass both (74 percent in 2011). And Syracuse Elementary had 81.9 percent pass English and language arts (83.4 percent in 2011), 85.1 percent pass math (88.2 percent in 2011) and 74.2 percent pass both (76.7 percent in 2011).
By grade, corporation wide for spring 2012, Wawasee third-graders passed English and language arts at a 86.6 percent rate, math at 80.6 percent and both portions at 77 percent. Fourth grade students passed English and language arts at 81.5 percent, math at 85.4 percent and both at 76.3 percent.
The fifth grade had 75.3 percent pass English and language arts, 87.5 percent pass math and 71.8 percent pass both. The sixth grade had 79.9 percent pass English and language arts, 86.5 percent pass math and 75.2 percent pass both.
Seventh-graders passed English and language arts at 76.0 percent, math at 82.2 percent and both at 71.9 percent. And eighth-graders had 70.2 percent pass English and language arts, 78.5 percent pass math and 63.2 percent pass both portions.
For the first time statewide, more than 80 percent of students passed at least one of the subjects tested. Statewide, 81 percent of students passed the math portion of the test.