The Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests (CRCT), offered to the third to eighth graders across the state, helps determine Adequate Yearly Progress, AYP, for each school. Based on the scores, Wina Low, director of student services and system-wide coordinator of standardized testing, said she expects all the schools involved to make AYP.
“We had very good scores, overall. We’re seeing continued growth across the board,” she said.
The test has three grades, did not meet expectations, met expectations or exceeded expectations.
“We’re very pleased to see a huge percentage of students in the exceeds category,” Low said.
She said one of the goals of the school system is to make sure all students are meeting their highest potential.
Helping the students reach that potential was an after school program that started at the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year.
“We feel that program had a major impact on our students,” she said.
The program is for at risk students.
The subgroups in the testing, African American, disabled and economically challenged, to name a few, have all shown some improvement, Low added.
“All the schools did very well. The principals are thrilled,” she said.
The reading and math scores at the third, fifth and eighth-grade levels need to be passed by students to allow them to automatically advance to the next grade. If the student fails to met expectations in those categories, the student and parents must appeal to the school board.
This is the first year the first and second-graders have not participated in the CRCT testing, a result of a state decision to save money. Third through eighth grade are the only grades required by the federal government.
Low said the state did offer a sampling of previously used CRCT questions for first and second grade, allowing school systems to decided if they wanted to offer the tests as instructional assessments. Carrollton Elementary did offer those tests, to help prepare the students for the actual CRCT test prior to the third grade – when passing is required.
The results of those tests were released to the students’ parents.