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MCAS media morning

Even before I had my coffee today, I experienced two media moments I have to share: First, an article in today’s Sun (not online yet) detailed progress the district has achieved with MCAS. I had written here about astounding jumps in sixth grade math scores; last night at the school committee meeting, we compared 2005 math scores with 2007 and learned that 29% more students moved up to proficient/advanced while 18% more moved out of failing—raising the ceiling and the floor on student performance.  Other significant factors in the improved math scores is that in 2007, 67% more Lowell students took the test and 64% more had limited English skills, as well as 75.5% being at the federal poverty level—showing we’re raising all boats in student performance. Second, today’s Globe discussed the results of the MCAS science test, in which more than 25% of our students failed. In Lowell, we have teachers working on science curriculum in collaboration with UML to better meet state standards and align middle school and high school expectations. As the district continues to move forward with these initiatives, MCAS data will be used to inform curriculum decisions as another way to improve student performance in science, which will become a graduation requirement in 2010. One challenge that remains is the limited number of science labs at the high school, about half what is needed considering the size of the student population.

posted in Education, In the News | 0 Comments

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