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Scores at Metro Schools rise: Students show gains in math and graduation rate

Students in Metro Nashville Public Schools are achieving at higher levels in nearly all areas tested and the district’s achievement gaps are smaller than those occurring statewide for 13 of the 16 measures calculated, according to testing results released today by the district.  The results continue to reflect a pattern of steady progress by Metro Schools, which serves more than 81,000 students. Overall, students improved in all grades tested in math, with high schools showing the most dramatic increases.  Scores also improved in English III, social studies and science.

In this year’s results:

  • Math proficiency in grades 3-8 improved by 3.0 percentage points (39.4% to 42.4%), and value added growth in math significantly exceeded the state target.
  • High school math scores improved dramatically. Proficiency increased by 9.6 percentage points (41.8% to 51.4%) for Algebra I and 7.1 points (17.1% to 24.2%) for Algebra II.
  • English III scores increased by 3.8 percentage points (21.7% to 25.5%).
  • The 2012 graduation rate improved from 76.2% to 78.4%, surpassing the Annual Measurable Objective (AMO) set by the state. Metro Schools’ does not yet have the official 2013 grad rate, which will include summer graduates, but preliminary data indicates it will continue to rise.
  • Improvement also occurred in subject areas not included in accountability determinations. In grades 3-8, science proficiency increased from 44.5% to 45.2% and social studies scores improved from 75.1% to 75.9%.

Metro Schools’ reading/language arts scores are an area of concern, showing a decline in grades 3-8 and English II, a trend that appears to be reflected across the state. In 2013, Metro Schools’:

  • Reading scores across grades 3-8 dropped by seven-tenths of a percentage point (40.6% to 39.9%).
  • English II scores declined by 1.2 percentage points (48.7% to 47.5%), although value added growth for this subject significantly exceeded the state average.

“The trends we are seeing with our district data are generally similar to statewide results,” said Director of Schools Dr. Jesse Register. “Math scores are up and TCAP reading and high school English II scores are flat across the state.  These results may be affected by the transition to Common Core and a change requiring more exceptional education students to take the TCAP; however, we are not discounting these results and are developing a comprehensive K-12 literacy plan to address our students’ academic needs.”

In addition to a literacy plan, Metro Schools continues to address the achievement gap for subgroups of students. Two areas of notable improvement include:

  • The gap between Davidson County students with disabilities and their peers without disabilities is less than half of the statewide gap in grades 3-8 for both reading and math.
  • The gap between Black/Hispanic/Native American subgroup and all students is roughly half of the statewide gap in grades 3-8 in both reading and math.
The State Department of Education has not released value added results and district status under its accountability plan.  That information is expected in the coming weeks.