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Most Lodi Unified School District schools fail to meet state’s API target

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“Despite achievement fluctuations over the past five years of testing, the trend has always been in a positive direction, and ultimately, every subject area can be very proud of the gains for which they are responsible.”

Bob Lofsted, Principal, Lodi High School

Posted: Thursday, August 29, 2013 1:55 pm

Lodi Unified School District schools showed mixed results when it came to the state Academic Performance Index exams for the 2012-13 school year.

Thirteen of the Lodi Unified schools — which include schools in Lodi, North Stockton, Woodbridge, Victor, Lockeford, Acampo and Morada — met the state’s growth target of a score of 800 or higher. Another 30, however, failed to meet the state’s target, according to the results released Thursday.

Statewide, for the second straight year, a majority of schools met or exceeded the state performance target of 800 points on the API.

The so-called Growth API results show 56 percent of elementary schools, 50 percent of middle schools and 31 percent of high schools are now meeting the state benchmark.

The API is a numeric index that ranges from a low of 200 to a high of 1,000. Statewide, the overall API declined by 2 points from last year, from 791 to 789.

Lodi High School Principal Bob Lofsted said it’s a great credit to his staff and students that the school’s API score came within four points of the state target at 796.

“It has been a very difficult goal to grasp, as areas that are a strength in one year can suffer downturns the next,” Lofsted said in an email. “Despite achievement fluctuations over the past five years of testing, the trend has always been in a positive direction, and ultimately, every subject area can be very proud of the gains for which they are responsible.”

Lofsted added, “API scores are significantly impacted not just by the number of students who score at ‘proficient’ and ‘advanced,’ but also by those who advance from ‘basic’ or below into the next positive category. We’re very pleased that the gains ... were as extensive as they turned out to be.”

Tokay High School scored only a 752 on its API, but its students improved by 13 percentage points from 2012.

Tokay Principal Erik Sandstrom said one group highly responsible for his school’s improvement is English-language learners. They benefit from several reading improvement programs, he said.

Tokay’s overall growth can also be attributed to focused efforts of its students on daily lessons, participating with teachers on subject curriculum and assessments, and continually refining the process to increase student achievement, Sandstrom said.

Middle College High School, which has a large Lodi population even though it’s on the San Joaquin Delta College campus, scored a 915 on its API. The small school provides direct access to Delta College classes and encourages teens who aren’t interested in a traditional high school.

In Galt, all elementary schools except Valley Oaks earned a score over 800 points. The campus was also the only one in the district not to meet its targets schoolwide.

However, nearly all saw a drop in their scores compared to last year. The largest decrease was McCaffrey Middle School, which went from 842 to 814.

Greer Elementary, where students last year saw the biggest increase with 43 points, dropped 15 points this year.

Superintendent Karen Schauer of the Galt Joint Union Elementary School District recognizes it was not the consistent improvement the district has seen the past six years. She chalked it up to intensifying efforts to put the new Common Core State Standards into place.

Still, River Oaks, which saw the highest score at 860 points in 2012, went up another four points this year.

The elementary district’s entire score is 823, down 16 points from last year’s 839.

Galt Joint Union High School District students continue to fall short of the coveted 800 mark, although the district’s overall scores went up by five points.

Galt High School lost the 3-point increase it saw last year and it remains at 753.

Liberty Ranch High School climbed eight points to 771, after sinking 31 points to 763 in 2012.

Estrellita Continuation High School dropped significantly, from 587 to 535, although fewer than 99 students took the exam.

To view scores for any school, district or county in California, visit api.cde.ca.gov.

News-Sentinel staff writer Jennifer Bonnett contributed to this report.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at rossf@lodinews.com.

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