Monett in middle of test score pack

Friday, December 30, 2016

Pattern shows consistent growth, shared dips

Scores on state standardized tests for students in the Monett school district showed fairly similar trends as other schools in the conference, including downward dips.

Mike Evans, assistant superintendent, observed that the Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) tests, differing from year to year, offered no clear comparisons to schools in Monett's conference, or larger schools. He showed how students from the Class of 2020 scored to see if the same group of students registered gains over time, as has been Monett's historic pattern.

In communication arts, the Class of 2020 continued that pattern, rising from a score of 28.3 in 2011 to a high of 56.8 in 2016. The 2015 score dropped nine points from the previous year, but the 2016 score was a full point higher than the previous year.

Looking at schools of similar size, though likely with smaller minority populations, Monett's score was within two points of Aurora, Bolivar and Hollister, and within three points of Logan-Rogersville and McDonald County. Marshfield and Carl Junction topped the comparisons at around nine points higher than Monett. Carthage, Cassville, East Newton and Joplin all fell several points below Monett's score.

In English language arts, looking at Aurora, Carthage, Cassville, McDonald County, Nixa and Webb City, Monett had fallen from the middle of the pack for the sixth grade tests to the bottom in the seventh grade test. For the eighth grade test last spring, Monett's top performers rebounded back to the middle, with Aurora and McDonald County, while Cassville dipped to the bottom. Riding well above all the other schools was Nixa, scoring about 20 points higher than Monett, and 10 points higher than Webb City.

In math, comparing those who scored in proficient and advanced, Monett, Cassville and McDonald County all nosedived. Aurora and Webb City each gained about five points, while Nixa shot up nearly 10 points.

"Our goal at Monett is to ensure that all students continue to grow, continue to learn, and continue to master the essential skills and content that will ensure they are prepared for their futures," Evans said. "The data we see in the cohort comparisons allow us to see where we need to focus our efforts.

"When we compare ourselves to other schools in the area, and around the state, it is important to remember that every school district has unique strengths and challenges. These comparisons help us to see a bigger picture and examine state level trends, but should not distract us from the work we are doing everyday to improve education for all Monett students."

Evans indicated he would continue to explore the number variance and have conversations with other schools about their strategies.

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