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Lemon Grove Pupils Continue Upward Trend in Statewide STAR Tests

Compared with 2011, share of students proficient in math, science and English made gains.

Updated at 7:40 a.m. Sept. 7.

The percentage of Lemon Grove students scoring proficient or higher in math has jumped more than 7 points in two years, 2012 STAR test results show.

And while a bigger share of Lemon Grove students were proficient in math in the spring testing than their county and statewide peers, according to the latest Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) results, the percentage proficient in English language arts, history/social science and science was below the county and state rates.

Compared with 2011 results, the share of students proficient in English, math and science saw appreciable gains, but history proficiency rates slid nearly 2 points, according to results made public last week.

Overall, Lemon Grove students continued an upward trend since 2010, especially in science, data show.

Of the 2,849 eligible students enrolled on the first day of testing, 2,841 took the mostly multiple-choice tests in the K-8 district's seven schools.    

Results, only for public-school students, are posted on the state STAR site.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said the 2012 STAR test results marked the ninth straight year California students improved their performance on annual statewide mathematics and English-language arts exams.

Some 4.7 million students took part in the 2012 STAR program, with 57 percent scoring proficient or above in English-language arts and 51 percent scoring at proficient or above in mathematics, the highest percentage since the tests were fully aligned in 2003 to California’s content standards, which describe what students should know for each grade and subject tested.

“In less than a decade, California has gone from having only one student in three score proficient to better than one student in two,” Torlakson said. “That’s nearly 900,000 more students reaching proficiency now than in 2003—a remarkable achievement that represents real, sustained improvements in learning.”

Lemon Grove School District STAR results (percent rated advanced or proficient)


2012 LGSD
2012 state 2012 county 2011 LGSD
2010 LGSD ENGLISH 52.8 57.2 63.0 48.4 46.4 HISTORY 44.4 48.8 53.0 46.1 38.2 MATH 56.6 51.5 55.3 54.7 49.1 SCIENCE 49.7 59.5 64.8 43.5 46.2

GRADES TESTED: English language arts (2-11), history and social science (8 and 11 and end-of-course), math (2-7 and end-of-course) and science (5, 8 and 10)

San Diego County saw nearly 372,000 students take the tests, with results reported as advanced, proficient, basic, below basic and far below basic.

The state Board of Education has established the “proficient” level as the desired achievement goal for all students.

State officials said of “proficient”:

That level represents a point at 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. This achievement goal is consistent with school growth targets for state accountability and requirements of the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

In 2012, for example, 55.3 percent of San Diego County students in fifth, eighth and 10th grade tested as advanced or proficient in math. In Lemon Grove, 56.6 percent scored proficient or higher.

Statewide, 51.5 percent of students in those three grades were proficient or advanced in math, data show.

“Even more remarkable is the fact that our students continue to make gains even as our schools—and the teachers, administrators and school employees working in them—are getting by with so much less,” Torlakson said.

“As pleased as I am by the great progress many students are making, the deep school budget cuts of recent years make it ever less likely these gains will continue. Preventing further cuts and beginning to restore what’s been lost are essential to helping every student learn and prepare for the future.”

These scores are used for calculating each school's Academic Performance Index, or API, and Adequate Yearly Progress, or AYP.

Information about the API and AYP is posted on the California Department of Education Accountability Progress Reporting Web page.

Individual student results are not reported online.

The state says: “School districts must forward individual STAR Student Reports to parents/guardians within 20 working days of having received the reports. Parents/guardians who do not receive their child’s report should contact the school or school district where the child was tested to request the results.”

Editor's note: This story was revised to show the correct percentage gains in math.

Lemongrovelocal September 07, 2012 at 01:47 PM
I can see where the history and science scores could be lower in the lower grades. It seems like the focus is mainly on English Language Arts and Math with very little incorporation of history and science into their curriculum. None the less, I'm pleased to see that most of the scores have improved since last year. My son took the STAR test last year for the first time and I wasn't aware we would get his results. I was thrilled to see he was advanced in all subjects, which at his grade level includes only ELA and Math. Here’s to another great year with the Lemon Grove School District…good job teachers, staff, students and parents!
James Davis September 07, 2012 at 09:53 PM
Looks like we are headed in the right direction with those scores.

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