News

SRVUSD students excel in standardized testing reports

72 percent of fourth grade students show 'advanced' STAR results

On Tuesday, the California Department of Education released results of the 2011 standardized testing and reporting (STAR) program, which showed that San Ramon Valley students of all grade levels continue to excel academically in all subjects.

While the standardized tests evaluate 4.7 million students statewide, results from the California Standards Test (CST) show that the district continues to make gains in the percentage of students scoring at the "proficient and advanced" levels, scoring well above the state average.

Despite an increase of more than 930 San Ramon Valley Unified (SRVUSD) students taking the exam, an equal or higher percentage scored proficient or advanced in most grade levels for English and elementary or middle school general math.

"To see consistent testing gains in a high performing district like ours is very gratifying," said Superintendent Steven Enoch. "These results reflect an extremely dedicated group of teachers, supportive parents and hard-working students - all focused on core academic achievement for every student."

Approximately 22,600 students in grades 2-11 participated in the 2011 STAR program, with 85 percent scoring proficient or above in English-language arts and 78.5 percent scoring proficient or above in mathematics. Neighboring district Pleasanton Unified showed 83 percent advanced or proficient students in English as well as general math.

The largest percentage of students scoring proficient or advanced was in fourth grade, where 92 percent of students scored proficient or advanced in English-Language Arts -- a six-point increase from last year. Third grade students made a two-point gain with 90 percent scoring proficient or advanced in mathematics.

In the Life Science portion of the CST, which is tested in grades 5, 8 and 10, scores increased by a combined 9 percentage points.

The State Board of Education has established the "proficient" level as the desired achievement goal for all students. That level represents a solid performance in which students demonstrate a competent and adequate understanding of the knowledge and skills measured by the assessment at a particular grade, in a particular content area.

In order to appropriately test those skills, the 2011 STAR program consisted of the CST, a modified assessment designed for students with disabilities, standards based tests in Spanish and the alternate performance assessment for students who have significant cognitive disabilities.

The results of these exams, with the exception of the STS, are included in state and federal accountability reports. Students who complete the STS also complete the CST and/or CMA for their grade level.

Results are posted on the California Department of Education website and SRVUSD results can be found here.

Comments

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Pedal Power
a resident of Danville
on Aug 18, 2011 at 11:32 pm

Congratulations to all involved; it is nice to have some good news in these "interesting" times.
.
And special thanks to the teachers at Greenbrook, Country Club, Charlotte Wood, SRVHS & Monte Vista who gave our kids such a great start in life.
.
Way to go, SRVUSD!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on Aug 19, 2011 at 8:58 am

Yeah, sorry pedal power that I cannot share your joyful outlook on this little tidbit. Perhaps I can help Jessica with a more appropriate title:
"Students excel at becoming small automatons".
Yes, the schools here are good (with the strong exception of one aging & unhinged female Charlotte Wood teacher, who should have been fired a decade ago) - that's a primary reason many of us moved here. But this No Child Left Behind fiasco, and this idiotic Star testing, needs to be firmly placed in a dust bin of history where it belongs. We are extinguishing our kids creativity. If I hear one more idiot cliche on about "competing in the global economy" I'm going to vomit on their shoes.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Baby Boomer
a resident of Danville
on Aug 22, 2011 at 10:24 am

Those of us who attended public school in the 50's and 60's learned transferable subject content. We were not encouraged to believe that our uneducated opinions were of ultimate interest and importance. Content gave our generation a foundation upon which to reflect, evaluate, create and build new industries and new ideas.

We were able to "question authority" because we knew what "authority" was. Lack of standards promotes self-centered fuzzy thinking. National standards for education are imperative- IF the country values education for ALL. Countries who are leading the US in numbers(of engineers, scientists, etc.) have larger numbers of students to start. Only the top percentage of students in those countries are encouraged. Lesser performing students are dropped by the wayside. Hence the cheap labor pool in those countries.

btw: The data on all testing is subject to interpretation. Local schools are high performing; period. However, the tangled web of interpretation of testing data is self-serving, at best. Doesn't hurt property values, however.




 +   Like this comment
Posted by Ex High Teacher
a resident of San Ramon
on Aug 22, 2011 at 12:17 pm

After many decades inside the classroom, I am able to understand the many many interruptions, distractions which all students have, in some cases parents are the issue, and of course some teachers are the problem but I am looking over-all many decades and how students function inside the classroom.

They arrive with cell phones distractions, pagers, no lunches, no books, no homework done, extremely limited reading ability, all the more limited language usage, tons of tv time no matter where creating the false image of what reality is, arrive with no real food starting the day but some sugar snack, most often angry about someone or something, massive demands on their personal physical development from all quarters; all these "minor" things can and do take place each day, each hour. Then, there are the exploders who just explode about something and will/do accuse a teacher for something.

These scores are well deserved by all students who listened, prepared, paid attention to teacher directions at the appropriate time.

This district is very fortunate to have such deserving students who can have so much academic support from so many excellent teachers despite what the public may say, believe, suspects, or listens to hearsay.

It is very unnerving to be in a classroom when so many students may believe that they are in more possession of knowledge on certain topics or just dont believe or understand that long range self discipline is a very important self skill to do well in many and all school topics or later life.

I shall end here and hope that all these well deserving students continue to improve and trust the skills of their teachers as they are often shot down by some pubic, discrediting teachers.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Michelle
a resident of Danville
on Aug 23, 2011 at 10:00 am

Derek-please add "21st Century Learners" to your vomitable phrases.

Standardized testing is the downfall of public education. Why teach kids to fill in bubbles about English or Math? Why not have THEM DO IT!?!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Mom
a resident of San Ramon Valley High School
on Aug 23, 2011 at 10:22 pm

I am happy the students do well on testing for their college apps and for real estate values and school funding. However, having watched closely what effect the teaching to the test reasoning has on the kids, I am not happy. My child has does not value learning or more importantly THINKING. It's get the answers and be done and if you can't get the answer quickly, forget it - you lose. I could go on and on about how I feel this logic is wrong and how this is what puts us behind other countries who train their children very young to THINK and take their time unraveling puzzles. This develops a good mind and the patience needed for problem solving.


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