Alameda Unified sees overall rise in test scores

Alameda Unified sees overall rise in test scores

Michele Ellson

Alameda’s public schools saw test scores rise this past year, though not enough for some schools that have consistently failed to meet test score targets to escape federal scrutiny.

Overall, the district saw its Academic Performance Index score rise six points, from 841 to 847, with 12 of the district’s 15 schools earning scores of 800 or more, results released by the California Department of Education today showed. The state has set a score of 800 on the 1,000-point scale as the target it wants schools to meet.

Twelve of 15 district schools saw increased test scores, with Bay Farm, Otis and Haight elementary schools and Encinal High School each seeing double-digit gains. Alameda Unified’s black, Latino and socioeconomically disadvantaged students also saw double-digit gains on the tests, though their scores continued to lag behind those of their white and Asian peers.

The district’s three charter schools all saw their test scores rise, with Nea Community Learning Center’s scores rising 14 points. Still, the school’s low-income students and its English learners saw their scores decline, by 30 and 48 points respectively.

Paden Elementary School, which had been placed in a program for troubled schools for failing to meet test score targets, will be removed from the program this year after exceeding its test score target for socioeconomically disadvantaged students. The school saw its test scores jump to 851 from 829, with scores for African American students rising 51 points and socioeconomically disadvantaged students, 46 points.

Will C. Wood Middle School and Ruby Bridges Elementary School each saw their test scores rise as well, but not enough to emerge from what’s called Program Improvement. The program, which targets schools that serve enough low-income students to obtain federal funds to help educate them, imposes sanctions on schools that fail to meet test score targets for five straight years.

The former Washington Elementary School saw its scores tumble by 55 points between 2011 and 2012, but since the school converted to a magnet this year, its years in the program have been erased.

“These results confirm that we are building on a strong foundation,” Superintendent Kirsten Vital said in a district press release. “After AUSD's remarkable double digit API growth in 2009 and 2010, students, teachers, staff and families should celebrate that we have continued to improve our results as a District in 2011 and 2012. At the same time, we are determined to continue our work to provide the best educational opportunities we possibly can for every student in AUSD.”

The district’s scores are available online here, and district officials are planning to present a detailed analysis of the scores at a to-be-announced school board meeting.

Alameda Unified’s test scores

Here’s a list of Alameda’s schools and the test scores they achieved this year, followed by last year’s scores.

ALAMEDA CITY UNIFIED: 847 (2012)/841 (2011)

Elementary Schools
Amelia Earhart Elementary 947/941
Bay Farm Elementary 961/948
Donald D. Lum Elementary 893/896
Edison Elementary 942/943
Frank Otis Elementary 907/896
Franklin Elementary 916/ 913
Henry Haight Elementary 832/822
Nea Community Learning Center 837/823
Ruby Bridges Elementary 835/811
Washington Elementary 722/777
William G. Paden Elementary 851/829

Middle Schools
Academy of Alameda 774/770
Lincoln Middle 912/ 909
Will C. Wood Middle 762/750

High Schools
Alameda Community Learning Center 827/824
Alameda High 830/824
Alameda Science and Technology Institute 896/895
Encinal High 761/751

Small Schools
Bay Area School of Enterprise 542*/C*

ASAM Schools
Island High (Continuation) 505*/619*

" * " means this API is calculated for a small school or LEA, defined as having between 11 and 99 valid Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) Program test scores included in the API. The API is asterisked if the school or LEA was small in either 2011 or 2012. APIs based on small numbers of students are less reliable and therefore should be carefully interpreted.

"C" means the school had significant demographic changes and will not have any growth or target information.

Source: California Department of Education