Last March, tenth grade students across the state took the Third Generation Connecticut Academic Performance Test (CAPT). While this was a new version of the CAPT, students continued to be assessed in four areas: Mathematics, Science, Reading Across the Disciplines and Writing Across the Disciplines. The CAPT continues to be a comprehensive, rigorous assessment of studentsí ability to apply the knowledge and skills they have acquired throughout their years of schooling. Students must demonstrate their ability to solve problems, acquire and analyze information, read both fiction and non-fiction texts, draw conclusions and communicate effectively in writing. With only one year of data on the newest generation of the test, we are able to report the progress of Plainville tenth grade students who took the test in March of 2007 and compare their performance with their statewide peers.
The Mathematics test requires students to respond to open-ended and multiple choice questions that expect them to apply mathematics concepts and skills in the areas of Number and Quantity, Geometry and Measurement, Statistics, Probability and Discrete Mathematics, and Algebra and Functions. On the March 2007 assessment, 43.8% of Plainville tenth graders met or exceeded the rigorous state goal, compared to 45.2% of students across the state. 79.3% of Plainville students met the NCLB standard of proficiency in mathematics, compared to 77.2% of students throughout Connecticut.
The Science portion of the test requires students to answer multiple-choice and short essay questions to describe or explain important concepts in Life, Physical and Earth Science. In addition to the activities that comprise the school curriculum, students are asked to complete state designed curriculum embedded performance tasks throughout the year. These tasks ask students to apply the science concepts that they are learning to real world situations. The students are expected to use their increased understanding as they respond to open-ended questions on the CAPT. In Plainville, 44% of the students met or exceeded the state goal, which was comparable to the 44.4% of students statewide who achieved goal. Over 90% of Plainville students scored at the proficient level in science, a figure that is significantly higher than the 81.4% of students across the state.
Reading Across the Disciplines consists of a Response to Literature section as well as a Reading for Information section. Students are asked to read and write interpretive and evaluative responses to a short story. In addition, they must read nonfiction articles and respond to multiple-choice and open-ended questions asking for interpretation and analysis of the articles. Plainville students significantly outperformed their statewide peers with 51.7% of Plainville 10th graders meeting or exceeding the state goal, compared to 45.6% of students throughout the state. Similarly, 84.5% of Plainville students scored at the proficient level, compared to 79.7% of students across the state.
The Writing Across the Disciplines test consists of two interdisciplinary writing tasks in which students read nonfiction articles about an important issue and write a persuasive letter in which they take and defend a position. There is a third test which asks students to read passages of writing and answer multiple choice questions focused on errors in organization, word choice, syntax and mechanics. In writing, 46.8% of Plainville students achieved the rigorous state goal, while 52.9% of their peers across the state met or exceeded the goal level. However, 84.9% of Plainville students scored at or above the proficient level, in comparison to 82.2% statewide.
"We are pleased with the strong percentage of our students scoring at the proficient level, and we continue to examine curriculum and instruction in order to increase the percentage of our students scoring at or above the state goal," commented Dr. Kathleen Binkowski, Superintendent of Schools.
-Posted on September 14, 2007 at 04:50 PM
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