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Colleton student state tests show need for improvement

Students in grades three through eight are not meeting grade level expectations, according to recently-released test scores given by the S.C. Department of Education.
The local test scores are a part of two tests given to students across South Carolina. Those tests are the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (SCPASS) and the South Carolina College-and-Career Ready Assessment (SCREADY) tests. Both were given this past spring to students across the Palmetto State who are in grades three through eight.
According to those results, which were released by state education leaders on Sept. 5th, the majority of Colleton students who took two required state tests are not meeting state standards.
The SCPASS test focuses on science and social studies. State law requires that all students in grades four, six and eight take the science test. Students in grades five and seven are required to take the social studies test.
The SCREADY test focuses on English, math and SCPASS science.
The test scores are graded in four areas: exceeds expectations, meets expectations, approaches expectations and does not meet expectations.
Based on the state test scores, Colleton students in all grades are performing below the state average in English language arts and in math.
However, local students in grades 6 performed better than last year in English/language arts and third-graders showed improvement in math. There was also a greater percentage of growth in grades 3, 6 and 8 in English/language arts and math improved in local students in grades 3, 6,7 and 8, when comparing students in Colleton County to students from across the state.
As for the English test:
Third grader test results for English are: 41.4 percent of third graders did not meet state standards; 34.7 percent are approaching standards; 19.2 meet expectations, and 4.6 percent exceed state standards.
Fourth-grade Colleton County student scores are: 52.4 percent of students do not meet standards; 25.2 are approaching standards; 17.1 meet stadnards; and 5.3 exceed state standards.
In grades five, 43.6 percent do not meet standards; 37.5 are approaching, 16.3 percent meet standards; and 2.6 percent of fifth graders exceed standards.
In grade six, 36.3 percent of students do no meet standards; 37.4 are approaching; 20.7 meet; and 5.6 exceed state standards.
As for seventh graders, 45.1 percent of local students do not meet state standards for English; 32.1 percent are approaching; 17.0 are meeting; and 5.8 are exceeding standards.
In grades eight, 48.9 percent do not meet expectations, 30.4 are approaching; 17.2 meet standards; and 3.5 percent are exceeding standards.
In Math:
Third-grade test results are: 40.2 percent do not meet state standards; 26.9 are approaching state standards; 24.3 meet standards; 8.6 exceed expectations.
In fourth grades, 45.8 percent do not meet standards; 33.6 are approaching; 13.1 meet; and 7.6 percent exceed.
In grades five, 47.3 percent do no meet; 32.9 percent are approaching; 14.4 are meeting; and 5.4 are exceeding state standards.
In grades six, 46.5 do not meet state standards; 28.1 are approaching; 14.0 meet; and 11.4 exceed.
In grades 7, 56 percent do not meet; 29.7 are approaching; 9.8 meet and 4.5 percent exceed.
In grades 8, 45.2 percent of students do no meet state standards; 33.3 percent approach those standards; 17.2 meet state standards; and 4.3 percent exceed standards.
“We will continue to work with schools to ensure research based best practices are being implemented and schools are receiving the support and resources necessary to effect greater student achievement,” stated Dr. Juliet White, assistant superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction for the Colleton County School District. White issued her statement on the local test scores following the state’s test score release.
Colleton’s students “did not meet expectations” Under state standards, this means that Colleton students “need substantial academic support to be prepared for the next grade level,” as stated by the S.C. Department of Education.
“We will continue our daily instructional practices of focusing on the high expectations for student learning, monitoring the performance of students, developing strategies that assist students who did not reach the identified instructional expectations, and developing strategies to assist students that exceeded the instructional expectations,” she said.
State leaders are also commenting on the test score results for students from across South Carolina.
“We continue to hold high expectations for all South Carolina students and know through high quality classroom instruction and support from parents and the school community that every student has the potential to be successful,” said State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman.
“The results of these assessments, while just one measure of success, show that despite growth in many areas, we are still falling short of the benchmarks set to ensure our young learners are prepared and on track,” she said. “We will continue to work hand in hand with South Carolina teachers so they have the tools and resources to help students grow academically in their classrooms and ultimately produce high school graduates that are ready for the next step.”

Heather Walters (1415 Posts)