Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Good News For Students with Disabilities

2016 statewide results show improvement in math, reading and other subjects, with most gaps narrowing

For students with identified disabilities, recently released 2016 results show some important progress, including:
Mathematics proficiency increased at all three levels, growing 3.4 points at the elementary level, 2.5 points in middle school, and 0.9 points at the high school level.

Proficiency also increased in reading, social studies, writing, and language mechanics.

Achievement gaps declined between these students and their classmates without identified disabilities almost across the board, with an exception only for mathematics (where growth was even bigger for students without disabilities).
These results for students with identified disabilities still provide reasons for concern, including these:
Science proficiency declined, with gap results improving because scores also declined (and declined faster) for students without identified disabilities.

The gaps between these students and their classmates remained unacceptably large in every subject and at every level
Proficiency remains far away for most of these students. For example, just over 28 percent of students with identified disabilities were proficient or above on the elementary KPREP mathematics assessment, even after this year’s big step up in those results. 
The chart above combines each subject’s KPREP results, averaging together the percent of students who reached proficiency or above at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, except that science uses the only high school assessment results. 

For further detail, with results and improvements at each level and full gap details, check out this one-page display of the trends for this group of students.

The Ready Graduates rate will combine the four-year graduation rate and the college and career readiness rate for graduates –but graduation results are not yet available for this particular group of students. 

It is important to remember that no one assessment can give a complete picture of progress towards meeting Kentucky’s ambitious goals for student learning. Many other kinds of evidence can enrich our understanding of how students’ knowledge and skills are developing.

Still, these results suggest generally positive movement for Kentucky’s students with identified disabilities. We must sustain and build on that improvement, providing the supports, challenges, and opportunities these students and all students need to reach much higher levels of achievement.

Note from Susan Perkins Weston: This post is an early sample from a larger report the Prichard Committee is developing, designed to share news like this for multiple groups of students, build attention to achievement and achievement gaps, and encourage statewide commitment to the urgent work of developing excellence with equity across Kentucky public education. Questions and feedback are especially welcome on this effort, as we're working to make the reporting as useful as possible.

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