New York

SED reports small gains on state tests

Schenectady also makes gains in ELA and math as half or more of students still score at lowest proficiency mark

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State education officials Thursday reported small statewide gains on annual math and English tests given to students in third through eighth grades.

The state’s overall math proficiency scores improved by 2.2 percentage points on the 2019 tests, while the state English Language Arts proficiency improved by just 0.2 percentage points compared to the 2018 tests. 

Test refusals also continued a gradual slide in recent years, with 16 percent of students across the test refusing to participate on the tests, down from 18 percent in 2018 and 19 percent in 2017. 

The achievement gap for black, Hispanic and American Indian students also continued to narrow slightly, though the gap remains a significant aspect of the test results. Black students across the state scored nearly 16 percentage points lower on the ELA tests than their white classmates, and they scored 23 percentage points lower than their white peers in math. Those gaps narrowed by about 1.5 percentage points compared to 2018 results. 

In Schenectady city schools, student proficiency scores also saw upward gains with 24 percent of students scoring proficient on ELA, compared to 22 percent in 2018 – but still nearly half of students registered at the state’s lowest proficiency level. In math, 16 percent of the district’s students scored proficient, up from 13 percent in 2018. 

This story will be updated with more regional analysis. 

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