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November 18, 2013

NPS students score higher than state average test results

NORMAN — An overview of spring student achievement results and Norman Public Schools was presented to the Norman Public Schools Board of Education at a regular board meeting Monday.

Dr. Shirley Simmons, assistant superintendent of Educational Services, and Beth Spears, director of staff development and student achievement, presented statistical data regarding reading, English, math and science, comparing NPS to 2012 scores and state averages.

In third- through eighth-grade reading scores, all grade levels scored above the state average with an increase in fourth grade from a 70 percent pass rate in 2012 to a 74 percent rate in 2013, as well as an increase in eighth grade by 1 percent from 2012 to 2013. English II and English III scores also were above state averages.

Simmons said this year, new fifth- and eighth-grade writing tests were in place, so there was no 2012 data to compare this year’s scores. However, both NPS fifth- and eighth-grade student averages scored above state averages.

NPS fifth-graders averaged 66 percent compared to the state average of 56 percent. NPS eighth-graders averaged 68 percent compared to the state average of 55 percent.

NPS math scores also were high for 2013, scoring above 90 percent in algebra I, geometry and algebra II.

The most troubling of all statistical information presented to the Board of Education was NPS average pass rates in science.

Compared to state averages, fifth- and eighth-grade science scores — as well as biology test scores — were all above state averages but not significantly in fifth-grade science or biology.

In fifth-grade science, NPS averaged 56 percent compared to the state average of 51 percent. In eighth-grade science, NPS averaged 72 percent compared to 53 percent. In biology, NPS averaged 57 percent compared to 54 percent.

Simmons said the science test was newer as well, so work in the district would need to be done to adjust to its challenging new dimensions.

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