The 2013 Delaware Comprehensive Assessment System (DCAS) shows overall progress over the two-year period that DCAS has been in use in Delaware, although there are still some areas requiring attention moving forward. Some of the highlights are as follows:
Students attaining reading proficiency 2013: 72%
Students attaining reading proficiency 2011: 61%
Math proficiency 2013: 70%
Math proficiency 2011: 62%
In 2012, individual growth targets were developed for each student and this was the first opportunity to see schools’ success in this measure of improving skills for everyone. A higher percentage of students reached their individual growth targets compared with last year, increasing from 65%to 68% in reading and 60% to 62% in math.
The greatest success story may be in the middle and high school reading performance, where there were gains of 4-6 percentage points in the percent of students scoring at the advanced reading level. Secretary of Education Mark Murphy stated, “Scoring at the advanced level is an important indicator of college readiness, making these gains particularly encouraging. We have no illusions about the challenge of improving secondary school performance. Our students and educators deserve praise for the hard work that has led to this progress.”
The state met its overall reading and math goals for all reported groups, with the exception of English language learners and students with disabilities, where the state missed its targets by a narrow margin. Delaware schools remain on track to meet federal progress targets.
“With our fall assessment, we know that the majority of our students are not proficient at the start of the year, and our educators work incredibly hard to help all of their students make academic growth,” Governor Jack Markell said. “We’re excited by the progress we’ve made in the last two years, but we also know that sustainable, structural changes require a substantial long-term commitment to our efforts to raise standards, improve teacher preparation, expand early childhood education and use data to drive decision-making.”
Murphy added, “We are encouraged to see more students making progress throughout the school year and that much of last year’s considerable improvements in proficiency were sustained over the past year.”
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