Kentucky’s education leaders say they are encouraged by some of the results from statewide assessments during the 2016-17 school year.
However, achievement gaps among certain groups of students remain in many areas.
According to data released Thursday from the Kentucky Department of Education, overall achievement increased slightly at the elementary and middle school levels, but was down somewhat among high schools.
Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt says he’s most pleased with a 13 percent increase in the number of students taking Advanced Placement tests. He adds there was also a jump in the number of students scoring well enough on those exams to earn college credit.
"I hear every now and then across the country that low-income kids have a hard time learning, they're under-served, and have such hard backgrounds," Pruitt said in a virtual news conference this week. "What that shows is that with the right support, kids can learn and at high levels."
Data from last academic year also show that ACT results also increased across the board in English, math, reading, and science. The overall composite score for the college entrance exam rose to 19.8 on a scale of one to 36.
The high school graduation rate improved to 89.8 percent, an increase from 88.6 percent the year prior.
The state is in the process of phasing out the current accountability system and replacing it with a new one that will be in place for next school year.
“As we move into our new accountability system over the next two years, we expect to see even more positive results as districts and schools move beyond test score and compliance mentality to a continuous improvement model that promotes proficiency and the closure of achievement gaps for every child,” Pruitt said.
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