Ann Riebock: District 41 committed to rising to the challenge of new standards
Recently, we let our community know to expect a significant drop in our state test scores, the scores by which we are judged for academic achievement and compliance to the No Child Left Behind law.
This is a hard message and an uncomfortable one. However, within this situation lie opportunities for the district, our students and our community.
Why are scores falling? Schools statewide have been warned to expect this as the state’s grading criteria become harder and the test questions start to focus on more difficult new Common Core Standards material. Recently, the state “re-scored” last year’s tests against its new criteria to give schools a preview of what is ahead: District 41 went from 91.4 percent meeting or exceeding to 50 to 60 percent meeting or exceeding (and that is without the coming Common Core questions). It’s not that our students are suddenly doing worse than they did before; it’s that the standards are rising. That is a good thing, and something that all schools are facing together.
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