Worcester Test Scores Impress

Worcester Test Scores Impress
The graphic shows the various rankings of students with level one indicating not meeting expectations and level five exceeding expectations. Submitted Image

NEWARK – School assessment data released this week reveals that Worcester County students have again exceeded state averages.

School system officials announced Thursday that the latest PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) scores show that Worcester County once again leads the state in college and career readiness (CCR) in five of the assessments administered last year. Worcester leads the shore in CCR in nine assessments and ranks second in the shore in all other assessments.

“The examination of these scores is further affirmation that what we are doing here in Worcester County is working,” said Superintendent of Schools Lou Taylor. “It is evident that our students are showing remarkable growth and success, which in turn validates the dedication and innovative work of our educators. Worcester County Public Schools is supported by an incredible network of partners: our students and their families, our faculty and staff, school and administrative leaders, our Board of Education and our County Commissioners who have all had a part in our students achieving this high level of success.”

In English/Language Arts (ELA), 61.2 percent of all students in grades three through eight combined scored a level of four or five (the levels that equate to ”college and career ready”) – nearly 20 percentage points over the state’s average in the same grade levels. This score marks a 3.1 percentage point increase over last year for Worcester County, whereas the state increased only 1 percent. At the high school level, 57.6 percent of Worcester County students demonstrated CCR in the English 10 assessment, well above the state average of 42.5 percent.

In mathematics, 51.3 percent of students in grades three through eight combined achieved CCR, which demonstrates a growth of 2.7 percentage points from 2017 scores. Worcester’s performance again outpaces both the state’s average of 34.1 percent and the state’s year-to-year growth of one percentage point. In Algebra I, 46.9 percent of students in Worcester County achieved CCR, which is nearly 16 percentage points above the state average.

Standing out in the county’s performance results were ELA scores in grades three, four and six, as 61 percent of the third and fourth graders scored at a level four or five. An incredible 72 percent of sixth graders achieved CCR in English/Language Arts, nearly double that of the state average of 38.7 percent. In these assessments, Worcester students outperformed all other counties in the state. Third graders in the county also had a stand-out performance on the math assessment, with 67.7 percent scoring at a level of four or five, topping scores from all other counties in Maryland.

Another highlight in Worcester County’s performance is how students qualifying for Free and Reduced Meal Programs (FARMS) are performing on the state assessments. In ELA, this subgroup was first in the state in four assessments and second in the state in all others. In mathematics, students eligible for FARMS in Worcester County topped the state in three assessments and ranked within the top five performing counties in all other assessments.

Complete testing data can be viewed online at www.mdreportcard.org.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.