2008-06-26 / Top Stories

Dist. 18 Students Post Gains On Math And Reading Exams

Mayor (at podium) announces new tests scores at public school in Harlem where he was joined by United Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten (2nd from right), Chancellor Klein and other city officials.Mayor (at podium) announces new tests scores at public school in Harlem where he was joined by United Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten (2nd from right), Chancellor Klein and other city officials. Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Schools Chancellor Joel Klein announced on Monday that New York City elementary and middle school students made substantial progress at every grade level in English Language Arts and math since last year, outpacing gains made by students statewide and building on consistent progress since the start of the Bloomberg Administration.

New York City's one-year gains in both English Language Arts and math were larger than the rest of the state's at every grade level with only one exception. Today, in math, 79.7 percent of students in fourth grade and 59.6 percent of students in eighth grade- the two grades tested by the State since the start of the administration- are meeting or exceeding grade-level standards, up from 52 percent and 29.8 percent, respectively, in 2002. In English Language Arts, 61.3 percent of students in fourth grade and 43 percent of students in eighth grade are meeting or exceeding grade levels, up from 46.5 percent and 29.5 percent, respectively, in 2002.

According to the DOE, students in School District 18 increased their ELA scores since 2006, but at 56.8 percent it is still more than four points below the citywide average. In math, District 18 fourth graders' test scores rose a whopping 17.1 percent in two years, but at 70.8 percent still lags below the citywide average.

Also, African-American and Latino students in New York City achieved greater gains in both English Language Arts and math than their white and Asian peers, narrowing the racial and ethnic achievement gap.

The mayor and chancellor were joined by United Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten, Council of School Supervisors and Administrators President Ernest Logan, and other city leaders at PS 175 in Harlem.

"Teachers, principals, parents, and students all have been working hard and they all deserve congratulations for the results," said the mayor. "Our students have made great progress in math and reading, building on the gains of recent years. We've put our children first and focused on results- and all New Yorkers should be very proud of what our schools are achieving. However, there's still more work to be done, and we'll continue to do what is necessary to provide every child with a quality education and to prepare each for the future."

Chancellor Klein said. "We've set high standards, created strong academic interventions for struggling students, held schools responsible for results, and given educators the tools they need to assess how well they're doing and how well students are progressing."

In math, the percentage of students in grades 3 to 8 meeting or exceeding standards rose 9.2 percentage points since last year, from 65.1 percent to 74.3 percent.

In English Language Arts, the percent of students in grades 3 to 8 meeting or exceeding standards rose 6.8 points since last year, from 50.8 percent to 57.6 percent.

While students throughout the state have made progress, gains by city students have been larger than those of students in the rest of the state- both in the past year and over the course of the Bloomberg administration.

New York City students of all races made gains this year and since the start of the Administration in 2002, but African-American and Latino students are making progress faster than white and Asian students, successfully narrowing the racial achievement gap. Weingarten said. "These test scores tell us that teachers' hard work and skill, as well as the unprecedented investments made in teacher quality and direct services to students, are paying off."

The gap separating Latino and white students in New York City in fourth-grade math has narrowed by 15.2 points since 2002.

In 2007, Latino students scored 17.8 points below white students, and in 2008 Latino students scored 15.3 points below white students. In eighth-grade math, Latino students have closed the gap with white students in New York City by 8.7 points since 2002, from 34.3 points in 2002 to 30.3 points in 2007 to 25.6 points in 2008.

Test results can be accessed at www.nyc.gov.

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