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Glen Ellyn School District 41 continues to see progress with MAP testing

GLEN ELLYN – Glen Ellyn School District 41 is hoping to build on student success from 2014-15 as they prepare for the next school year.

Assistant Superintendent for Teaching, Learning and Accountability Karen Carlson presented standardized test results for District 41 students' Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) tests at a Board of Education meeting in June.

MAP data assessments were made for students with comparisons for fall 2014 and spring 2015 to capture growth made from fall to spring sessions. The MAP test is measured in RIT scores.

"The nice thing is when you do grade-level assessments, you're assessing them at that level," Carlson said. "The MAP allows you to get that information and further differentiate for them."

The district's mean RIT score improved in every grade level from fall 2014 to spring 2015, according to board documents. District 41 is above the national mean RIT score in both reading and math in all grade levels.

Some notable spikes in mean RIT scores were made in first-grade math and reading scores. First-graders had an actual mean growth of 20.7 points in math between fall and spring and a growth of 18.1 points in reading between fall and spring. All district grade levels exceeded projected growth targets for their grade levels.

"I think overall, we were pleased with all of the data," Carlson said. "I was really happy to see some of those bump-ups in reading."

Superintendent Paul Gordon said he is pleased at the academic achievement.

"It comes down to individual kids making growth. For that to happen, we have amazing teachers bringing these kids to the next level," Gordon said.

Carlson said the district has used the MAP testing since 2008. The test aligned with Common Core standards starting in 2011 and the tests are given out three times a year in September, December and March.

The MAP tests measure growth, project proficiency on high-stakes tests and help to inform educators on instruction and curriculum structure, according to the MAP website. Carlson said the test is adaptive, so as students get questions right, the test gets harder, if they get questions wrong, the test gets easier.

MAP serves as a benchmark for testing along with the newly introduced Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College (PARCC) testing, which is the new state-mandated test taking place of the Illinois Standard Achievement Test (ISAT). PARCC results are scheduled to be released in the fall.

Gordon noted that the one area that they would like to improve on is closing the achievement gap for minority and economically disadvantaged students.

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