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RPS 205 shows growth on annual state math tests, composite scores flat


A majority of Rockford Public Schools made gains in math on the 2014 annual state standardized tests. Thirty schools, or 73 percent of schools tested, show a positive growth trend or maintenance in math when comparing the results from 2013. RPS 205 today released information from the Illinois Standards Achievement Test, given to third through eighth graders, and Prairie State Achievement Exam, given to high school juniors. The Illinois State Board of Education will release complete results Friday. (Click here to view chart. The percentage of tested students from each school that met or exceeded standards is listed for the past three years. Each hash mark represents a percentage point to serve as a visual aid to show growth. Charter schools, while included in the chart, are excluded from this summary.)

While there is growth and improvement to celebrate in RPS 205, the composite data is flat from the 2013 to 2014 exams. Forty-one percent of RPS 205 students tested in spring 2014 are meeting or exceeding state standards, compared to 40.5 percent in spring 2013.

Highlights from results:

  • Thirty of the 41 RPS 205 schools tested, or 73 percent, showed growth or sustained achievement in math on the 2014 test, compared to 2013. Sixteen schools showed growth or sustained achievement in reading in 2014 vs. 2013.
  • Auburn High School has shown year-over-year growth from 2012 to 2014 in both reading and math. Other schools with year-over year growth in both reading and math from 2012 to 2014 include Carlson and Spring Creek elementary schools and West Middle School.
  • Washington Academy and Thurgood Marshall School continue to perform at the top of the district and likely at the top of the state. State results will be released Friday.

Administrators are also tracking incremental growth in other areas the State Report Card measures. While there is work to do, there is year-over-year growth in graduation rates, and attendance rates are nearing 2011 levels. This is, in part, attributed to an increase in student engagement with the high school redesign and Academy model, plus an increase in interventions for student attendance.

Graduation rates Attendance rates ​
2012   62 percent 2011   94 percent 
2013   64 percent 2012   92 percent
2014   67.5 percent2013   92 percent 
2014   93.8 percent

While we celebrate school gains, growth year over year in the accompanying chart doesn’t accurately measure a student or a school’s growth, as it measures last year’s students against the same grade-level students the year before. With the state’s move to the PARCC assessments this spring, district leaders can better measure and track student and class growth throughout the school year.