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Reading targets missed in 5 groups

November 04, 2012|By JULIE E. GREENE | julieg@herald-mail.com

Washington County Public Schools missed assessment test proficiency targets for reading among five population groups: all students, black students, white students, special-education students and students who received free or reduced-priced meals, said Jeremy Jakoby, testing and accountability supervisor for the local school system.

The county still could have been considered to meet its proficiency target if the percentage of students who were at least proficient fell within the confidence interval. The state uses a confidence interval, similar to a margin of error, because the accuracy of measuring student performance is more accurate when there is a greater number of students within the demographic population being assessed, according to the state education department’s website at http://mdk12.org. While the actual progress target, or annual measurable objective, is a specific percentage of students, the confidence interval is a range of percentages.

According to Jakoby:

• 86.8 percent of tested students scored at least “proficient” in reading. The progress target for the school system was 88.3 percent. The confidence interval could have been met if the percentage of students who scored at least proficient reached 87.5 percent.

• 73.6 percent of tested black students scored at least “proficient” in reading. The progress target was 77.1 percent. The confidence interval could have been met if the percentage of black students who scored at least proficient reached 73.8 percent.

• 88.8 percent of tested white students scored at least “proficient” in reading. The progress target was 90.2 percent. The confidence interval could have been met if the percentage of white students who scored at least proficient reached 89.3 percent.

• 79.6 percent of tested students who received free or reduced-priced meals, scored at least “proficient” in reading. The progress target was 81.9 percent. The confidence interval could have been met if the percentage of these students who scored at least proficient reached 80.4 percent.

• 62.4 percent of tested special-education students scored at least “proficient” in reading. The progress target was 69.2 percent. The confidence interval could have been met if the percentage of special-education students who scored at least proficient reached 65.6 percent.

Students in grades three through eight take annual assessment tests. High school students take an assessment test for 10th-grade English.

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