Although Lodi Unified School District’s 2018 California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) scores were largely consistent with last year, the district is already looking at ways to improve in the future.
Released on Wednesday by the California Department of Education, the results consisted of the scores from more than 3 million California students from grades three through eight as well as 11th graders.
This is the fourth year the tests were administered, measuring students’ progress in English language arts and literacy as well as mathematics.
“CAASPP is really focused on Common Core and a deeper understanding of knowledge, instead of just regurgitating facts,” Randy Malandro, coordinator for assessment, research and evaluation for LUSD, said on Friday.
Approximately 43 percent of Lodi students met or exceeded ELA standards this year, a 1-percent increase from last year while math scores remained consistent with last year’s, with approximately 32 percent of students meeting or exceeding standards.
Approximately 50 percent of California students met or exceeded ELA standards this year, approximately 1 percent more than last year and roughly 39 percent met or exceeded math standards, an increase of approximately 1 percent as well.
In San Joaquin County, approximately 41 percent of students met or exceeded ELA standards, an increase of roughly 2 percent and nearly 30 percent met or exceeded math standards, an increase of almost 2 percent.
Nearly 50 percent of Lincoln Unified School District students met or exceeded ELA standards, and roughly 35 percent met or exceeded math standards.
Lisa Kotowski, assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, attributed the district’s consistent scores to a number of factors such as good first instruction in the classroom, collaboration between teachers and departments and monitoring student progress.
“We also do a lot of professional development with our teachers, so that we can assist them with finding strategies and alternative ways to reach students,” Kotowski said.
Although the district’s overall scores did not change much from last year, seventh- and 11th-grade students saw roughly 3-percent and 8-percent decreases in meeting ELA standards, respectively.
Three grades also saw decreases in students meeting math standards, with fifth grade decreasing by 3 percent, seventh grade decreasing by 1 percent and 11th grade decreasing by 2 percent.
“I think, across the board, there’s always room for improvement no matter how well you’re doing,” Malandro said. “There’s a consistent focus on excellence and improvement, so I think we’ll have high expectations moving forward.”
To encourage future improvement, Kotowski said the district is looking into developing a multi-tiered system to support students facing academic, emotional or behavioral challenges.
“We’re trying to formalize a process so that we can support the whole child, not just one side of the child,” Kotowski said.
Perhaps the most important step toward future improvement is increased student attendance, Kotowski said.
“Students need to come to school, we can’t educate them if they’re not here,” Kotowski said. “We’ve always pushed for student attendance, but we’re really going to be looking at students whose attendance maybe isn’t as good as it should be.”