Friday, May 21, 2010

'Nation's Report Card' Results are Mixed for San Diego Unified

San Diego Unified's results on "The Nation's Report Card" -- National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) -- show mixed results for San Diego Unified, with students in fourth and eighth grade increasing in some areas, but with others needing improvement. The NAEP tests a sampling of all schools in the nation, including public, charter and private schools. The Test Urban District Assessment (TUDA) provides details for 18 of large, urban school districts across the nation. San Diego Unified has participated in this program since 2003. Data on individual schools is not provided by this study. For more information, view detailed report (PDF).

Highlights, as compiled by San Diego Unified's Research and Reporting Division
  • Overall district NAEP reading performance at grades four and eight showed modest gains compared with 2007 on all measures, with improvements in average scale scores and in percentages of students scoring at or above basic and at or above proficient. Since 2003, there have been substantial gains at grade four, with steady progress; at grade eight, scores have zig-zagged up and down since 2003.

  • San Diego performed relatively well in reading compared to other TUDA districts, ranking fifth to seventh of 18 districts, depending on the grade level and the particular NAEP measurement. At both grade levels District students continue to perform lower than public schools nationally but, in general, higher than large central city and California public schools.

  • At grade four, Black, White, and Asian students showed gains over 2007 and 2003 performance. Although Hispanic students did not perform as well as other racial/ethnic groups in grade four, grade eight Hispanic students improved on all measures, while other racial/ethnic groups’ results were mixed.
  • District White students outscored their counterparts in national public schools and large central cities at both grades four and eight; except for grade four Black students, who also outscored their racial/ethnic counterparts nationally and in large central cities, District Asian, Hispanic, and Black students scored lower than their racial/ethnic counterparts nationally and in large central cities.
  • At both grades, economically disadvantaged students and English Learners saw little change in performance; Economically disadvantaged student and English Learner performance have been flat (negative over the long term for grade eight English Learners), while non-Economically Disadvantaged and non-English Learner student performance has improved since both 2003 and 2007.
  • In general, there has been little improvement in gaps among student groups varying in race/ethnicity, economic advantage, and English proficiency. Notably, the gap between Blacks and Whites at fourth grade has narrowed over the years.
  • Most reading performance gaps (White-Black, White-Hispanic, meal eligible-non-meal eligible, English Learner-non-English Learner, and Special Education-regular education) in grades four and eight are wider than corresponding gaps in California public schools, national public schools, and large central cities. Exceptions are the grade four White-Black gap which is smaller than that for large central cities and grade eight gap between Special Education and regular education students, which is slightly greater than that for national public schools, slightly less than that for large central cities, and well below that for California.
  • Comparisons to previous years’ results should be tempered by two considerations affecting the comparability of 2009 data with those of previous years:

    1. Previous years’ results included charter schools and the 2009 results do not and,
    2. The NAEP reading assessment framework, particularly at grade eight, has been changed, eliminating questions focused on reading to perform a task.
View detailed report (PDF).