080719_PNN_Milestones

Paulding County Schools’ central office in Dallas. Paulding students’ average scores exceeded the state average on most spring 2019 Georgia Milestones tests.

Paulding students’ average scores exceeded the state average on most spring 2019 Georgia Milestones tests.

Georgia Department of Education on July 26 released the results of end-of-course and end-of-grade tests taken by Paulding third- through 12th-graders in the spring of the 2018-2019 school year.

They showed Paulding County School District students’ average test scores exceeded the state average in 19 of 24 subject areas.

Paulding third- through eighth-graders scored above the state average on all tests except eighth-grade English language arts.

However, on the high school level, Paulding students only did better than the state average half the time.

Paulding high school students fared better than the state average in ninth-grade literature, algebra I, U.S. history and economics/business/free enterprise.

They scored below the state average in American literature, geometry, biology and physical science, including a mean score of 500 on physical science compared to 523 for students statewide.

Paulding students on all levels also scored above the state average on the percentage of students reading on grade level or above in the Georgia Milestones Reading Status measurement.

Paulding students also were above the state average in the percentage ranked as being proficient or better in 19 areas. They were below the state average for proficiency in five areas: fifth-grade social studies and high school American literature, geometry, biology and physical science.

The state education department defines proficient learners as demonstrating “proficiency in the knowledge and skills necessary at this grade level (or) course of learning, as specified in Georgia’s content standards.

Students who achieve the proficient designation are considered on track to being college- and career-ready, a news release stated.

Milestones is the state’s method of measuring how well Georgia students in grades three through 12 have mastered subjects in the areas of English language arts, mathematics, science and social studies.

They are tests that feature open-ended questions to better gauge students’ content mastery, state officials said.

Georgia elementary and middle school students are given the tests at the end of the school year.

A total of 16 end-of-grade and eight end-of-course assessments are given. The results show students are learning the content at any of four levels: beginning, developing, proficient or distinguished, state officials said.

Those in grades three through eight take end-of-grade assessments in language arts and math. Fifth-graders and eighth-graders also takes tests in science and social studies.

High school students are given end-of-course assessments in core subjects related to English language arts, math, science and social studies.

The core subjects include literature and composition; algebra, geometry, biology, physical science, U.S. history; and one that combines economics, business and free enterprise.

“Parents, the public, and policy makers, including local school districts and boards of education, can use the results as a barometer of the quality of educational opportunity provided throughout the state of Georgia,” according to the state Department of Education website.

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