State releases results of new testing measures
Dec 12, 2012 | 2341 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Utah State Office of Education recently released data from the new Utah Comprehensive Accountability System (UCAS). The system was developed to help schools better determine how students are progressing from year to year.

Two elementary schools in the San Juan School District are listed as Priority Schools. They are Tse’bii’nidzisgai Elementary at Monument Valley and Bluff Elementary. There are 15 priority schools in the state

There are 28 Focus Schools identified in the report, including three schools in the San Juan School District. They are Montezuma Creek Elementary, Monument Valley High, and Whitehorse High schools. The three are classified as low performing schools.

Monticello High is one of 48 schools identified as Reward Schools in the report. Monticello earned the designation as a result of high progress and above average achievement.

The UCAS testing system replaces the Adequate Yearly Progress provisions which were part of the No Child Left Behind Act.

Under the AYP system, schools received a “yes” or a “no” score in 40 categories of achievement. One “no” in any of the subcategories meant the school did not meet AYP.

This year, the Department of Education granted Utah a waiver to key parts of the act if they promised to create their own plan.

Under the new program, students are scored on achievement, as well as growth.

Elementary and junior high school students are tested on language arts, math, science and a direct writing assessment. High school students are tested on language arts, math, science and graduation.

Of the six elementary schools in the San Juan School District, three scored below the state average of 435.

Students at Albert R Lyman Middle School in Blanding received a score of 452, compared to the state average of 435.

Of the district’s five high schools, two scored above the state average of 398.

Each school has the potential to score 600 points on the UCAS test. Achievement scores can total 300 and progress scores can total 300.

Title I schools will still receive federal help through the state, and additional resources will be available to the schools scoring in the bottom 15 percent.

The test results are another indication of the challenges faced by many students in the San Juan School District.

In addition to individual challenges, there is a performance gap. Students from minority populations continuing to struggle when compared to general student populations.

Southern schools in the sprawling district have generally done better on AYP measures than other schools on the Navajo Reservation. The southern schools have a majority of Native American students.
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