Smarter Balanced Test

Smarter Balanced results: Tahoma compared with other districts

Tahoma students retained their standing in the top tier of school districts across the state, according to results from the first Smarter Balanced Assessment.

The new assessment replaces previous state tests and represents a change in learning standards. State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Randy Dorn, said the tests are more challenging but they also provide teachers and parents better information about student learning.

"Statewide results beat our predictions," he said. "That says to me that students are capable of learning our new standards, which are designed to make sure students are ready for career and college."

Tahoma students scored well above the state average for math and English language arts, the two subject areas that were tested last spring. Tahoma students were among the top 10 school districts (districts with enrollment higher than 50 students in each grade level) in grades 3, 5 and 7 in both math and ELA; overall, Tahoma students were in the top 10 percent for all grade levels among those districts. That compares favorably to Tahoma's usual standing with other districts on state standardized tests.

"Our students performed well and we're pleased that the change to Smarter Balanced Testing was successful," Superintendent Rob Morrow said. "Most of all, we're eager to look at these assessments closely and find ways to help our students gain a better understanding of math and language arts. That's the whole point of the new assessments and the new learning standards: how can we prepare students to be Future Ready?"

Parents will receive their student's assessment results in September; teachers will use those results to focus on areas where students need assistance. As State Superintendent Dorn stated, the assessments are intended as a tool to help students reach their learning goals.

"They are the most advanced (assessments) that students have ever taken," Dorn said. "They measure students' progress on the learning standards, so teachers know where students are succeeding and where they need extra help."

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