WESTEST 2 Results Show Positive Learning Trends

August 24, 2009

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – West Virginia’s school report card has earned bragging rights on the fridge. West Virginia Educational Standards Test (WESTEST 2) scores indicate that public school students are meeting proficiency levels in math and reading.  Of the 657 school accountable under No Child Left Behind, 503 (77.9%) met high levels of learning.

All West Virginia students in grades 3-11 are required to take the WESTEST 2, an assessment that measures student achievement of the West Virginia Content Standards and Objectives (CSOs).
More than 65 percent of elementary students tested in math were proficient and more than 65 percent of those tested in reading also were proficient. Nearly 57 percent of middle school students met the proficiency level in math and more than 63 percent met the reading proficiency level. More than 57 percent of 11th grade students met the proficiency level in math and 53 percent of high schoolstudents met the reading proficiency level.  
While there is always room for improvement, I am happy that our students are rising to meet the challenges presented by WESTEST 2,” said state Superintendent of Schools Steve Paine. “Since WESTEST2 is a brand new test, we have no way of comparing scores. However, students increased their scores from a field test conducted at the beginning of the 2008 school year. It is evident that Global21: Students deserve it. The world demands it. is transforming education in our state.” 
As part of Global21, the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) updated its CSOs to include rigor, relevance and 21st century performance skills.  Traditional subjects, including math, science, English, social studies and foreign languages, remain at the core of Global21. But the foundation is strengthened with the addition of performance skills, including critical thinking and problem solving. The new CSOs were taught throughout the school year.
“Measuring learning is an integral part of the instructional process as we work to narrow the gap between the knowledge and skills students learn in school and the knowledge and skills they need in the 21st century,” Paine said. “I am confident the steps outlined in Global21 will lead to real student achievement as we help our kids to be globally intelligent and resilient in a digital world.
In addition, educators are transforming how they teach by focusing on standards-based instruction. This is important because textbooks do not contain the same level of robustness and rigor that is imbedded into the state curriculum.”
Additional WESTEST 2 data can be found by visiting http://wveis.k12.wv.us/nclb/public09 , or by contacting the WVDE Communications Office at (304) 558-2699.

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