LONGMONT — In every subject area, students in the St. Vrain Valley School District outperformed the state average on this year’s Transitional Colorado Assessment Program.
The Colorado Department of Education released this month the TCAP results for the 2012-13 school year, and at the state level, students demonstrated improved scores in all of the four subject areas: reading, writing, science and math.
For reading, the number of Colorado students who scored proficient or advanced increased at all grade levels in 2013 by 0.2 percent. The reading results for grades three and 10 improved by at least 3 percentage points over the six-year period between 2008 and 2013.
For St. Vrain students, the number of students scoring proficient or advanced increased for most grades. Third grade improved from 81.1 percent in 2012, to 81.5 percent in 2013. The third-grade score was the largest gap in reading between St. Vrain students and their Colorado peers. The state average for proficient/advanced for third-grade reading was 73.3 percent.
All other grades in the district out-performed the state averages, but ninth- and 10th-graders in St. Vrain schools had a slight drop in scores between 2012 and 2013. The percentage of ninth graders scoring proficient/advanced went from 73.4 percent in 2012 to 71 percent in 2013 (the state average was 67.7 percent). The percentage for 10th grade went from 71.9 percent in 2012 to 71.8 percent in 2013 (the state average was 69.6 percent.)
In the writing assessments, the percentage of Colorado students scoring proficient or advanced increased from 2012 across all grade levels by 1 percent. The percentage of students scoring proficient or advanced in 2013 increased from 2012 in five grade: fourth, sixth, eighth, ninth and 10th. Three grade levels saw declines at the state level: third, fifth and seventh.
In the St. Vrain district, the scores dropped for third, seventh and 10th graders (1.1, 0.9 and 0.8 percent drops, respectively), but all three beat the state averages. In eighth grade, the percentage of St. Vrain students scoring proficient/advanced beat the state average by 8.6 percent. The eighth grade scores increased from 60.5 percent in 2012, to 64.4 percent in 2013.
For mathematics, the TCAP results posted gains for all Colorado grades over the previous year for proficient/advanced by 0.9 percent. The math results for grades four, seven, eight and 10 improved by at least three percentage points.
Again, there was a higher percentage of St. Vrain students scoring proficient or advanced compared to state levels for every grade. A crucial climb for the district happened for 10th grade math scores where last year 36.2 percent of St. Vrain students scored proficient/advanced; this year that percentage improved to 40.7 percent (the state average in 2013 for 10th grade is 33.9 percent).
The state only has three grades complete the TCAP exam for the science portion: fifth, eighth and 10th grade. On the 2013 science assessments, the percentage of students who scored proficient or advanced increased from 2012 across all grade levels by 1.5 percent. The percentage of students who scored proficient or advanced on the 2013 science TCAP increased from 2012 in grades 8 and 10. The science results for grades 5, 8 and 10 improved by at least three percentage points over the five-year period between 2008 and 2013.
For St. Vrain, all three grades tested for science demonstrated a higher percentage in 2013 of proficient/advanced scores. In fifth grade, the proficient/advanced percentage went from 50.6 percent in 2012, to 53.9 percent in 2013 (the state average in 2013 is 48.4 percent). In eighth grade, the proficient/advanced percentage went from 55.6 percent in 2012, to 58.1 percent in 2013 (the state average in 2013 is 51.7 percent). In 10th grade, the proficient/advanced percentage went from 54.9 percent in 2012, to 56.1 percent in 2013 (the state average in 2013 is 51.3 percent).
At Frederick High School, the 10th grades science scores also showed an increase in the percentage of proficient/advanced from 39.5 percent in 2012, to 41.4 percent in 2013.
Other subjects were a mixed bag for FHS. In 10th grade reading, 10 percent more students scored proficient or advanced from 2012 to 2013 (60.0 in 2012 to 70.5 in 2013). But these gains were reversed for ninth grade; 59.5 scored proficient or advanced in 2012 versus 71.3 percent in 2012.
One of the most pronounced climbs in TCAP for the district happened at Carbon Valley Academy, where the proficient/advanced reading score for seventh grade improved 26.3 percent.
Carbon Valley Academy Principal Lisa Gjellum said the credit for the improvement goes to the whole staff, but one teacher in particular, Jill Wyatt, deserves the praise for the seventh grade reading and writing scores.
“I would say it was the instruction, and what the teacher did is she sat down and she tried to predict what was coming up on the assessment from now on, reaching out to those common-core standards,” Gjellum said. “She’s trying to teach those students introductory high school skills way back in seventh and eighth grade so that they’re well-prepared.”
Contact Ben Wiebesiek at 303-659-2522, ext. 205, or email email@example.com.