JACKSON HOLE, WYO – The Wyoming Department of Education this week released the 2018-19 WY-Topp and ACT results. TCSD saw several areas of growth, with some areas for improvement.
The 2018-19 school year represents the second year Kindergarten through 10th grade students were assessed with the Wyoming Test of Proficiency and Progress (WY-TOPP). This state assessment is aligned with the Wyoming state standards and is rigorous assessment that is aligned with the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)assessment.
WY-TOPP assesses proficiency and growth in reading and math for students in grades K-10, although the public release covers grades 3-10 only. Science is assessed in grades 4, 8, and 10, and writing is assessed for students in grades 3, 5, 7, and 9. In grades where writing is assessed, it accounts for about 20% of the ELA score.
TCSD exceeded the state in nearly all areas for all grade levels. Working toward meeting ‘Success 2022’ goals, the district noted solid growth made in 3rd grade reading and math proficiency. District reps said they were especially pleased with ELA scores at the middle school where reading and writing outperformed the state and significant growth occurred.
The district underperformed compared to the state for 6th grade math. After review of data last spring the district made immediate changes to improve efforts in this area that included providing more training and support at the middle school level in math. School officials admit additional work is needed and they will continue to carefully analyze data to ensure the now-7th grade students will be successful in the 7th grade math curriculum.
District officials also pointed out that TCSD serves a high percentage of students who are learning English. They say national research shows is that it takes five to seven years for students to acquire language.
“We know that with appropriate support, students can make progress, and our students are making considerable growth toward achievement goals on our state’s rigorous assessment in a language other than their native language,” school reps stated.
All 11th grade students in Wyoming take the ACT, one of only a handful of states where that occurs. The Benchmarks are scores on the ACT subject-area tests that represent the level of achievement required for students to have a 50% chance of obtaining a B or higher or about a 75% chance of obtaining a C or higher in corresponding credit-bearing first-year college courses.
These college courses include English composition, college algebra, introductory social science courses, and biology. Based on a sample of 214 institutions and more than 230,000 students from across the United States, the Benchmarks are median course placement values for these institutions and as such represent a typical set of expectations.
The ACT College Readiness Benchmarks are:
- English: 18 (English)
- Math: 22 (College Algebra)
- Reading: 22 (Social Studies)
- Science: 23 (Biology)
TCSD exceeds the state scores in all areas and Jackson Hole High School has the highest average composite score and the highest scores in math and science in the state.
“While no single assessment is 100% predictive of student learning or future success, WY-TOPP and ACT give districts an overall look at how students are mastering content and the state standards. These assessments are important, but they are data points used to determine the focus of districts, schools, and teachers to ensure students are mastering the standards expected by the state of Wyoming,” Superintendent Gillian Chapman commented. “Every year we closely monitor results from all assessment tools to understand what is working and where we need to focus more attention. Our team will carefully review and analyze WY-TOPP, ACT and school-based data to inform instructional services for the coming school year.”
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