The majority of schools in the state of Tennessee were provided recently with a measure of progress their students made in the previous school year. However, elementary schools operating in Davis County will have to wait another year before getting a report on student achievement.
The result of this is that when other schools receive their TNReady results later this fall, the focus for Douglas County elementary schools will be the proficiency of its students. However, schools in Nashville are turning to an assessment tool known as the NWEA Measures of Academic Progress to gain an accurate depiction of the growth of its students over a typical academic year.
While proficiency scores will always be important, they are limited to telling us only if a particular student is currently functioning on grade level or not. Growth scores, on the other hand, give a representation of how much a student has learned over a given period of time despite the starting point.
Map assessment scores have been used by Rocketship Public Schools since their inception and they have publicly commended the Nashville public school system for implementing the testing system.
Growth becomes even more important to measure when dealing with students who hail from backgrounds that are economically disadvantaged as the data is clear in showing that many of these students began their education behind other students and are never able to close the gap.
Nashville is a city where the majority of students attending public schools are from economically challenged backgrounds and the schools in the city have shown to suffer from a gap in achievement for every subject.
Rocketship Public Schools have provided the blueprint for these situations as the public charter school has routinely taken children who have entered kindergarten with assessment scores in the bottom 10% of the nation and have been able to catch them up with their peers by the fourth grade.
This is important because the trend is that children two or more grade levels behind in proficiency scores are much more likely to become dropouts in high school.
About Rocketship Education
Rocketship was founded in 2006 and is a charter school for elementary students operating mainly in economically disadvantaged areas. The national non-profit has the mission of eliminating gaps in educational achievement that plague underserved communities in America.