MFL MarMac ‘celebrates’ test scores
By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor
At its April 14 meeting, Jen Wilwert presented the MFL MarMac School Board with district-wide Iowa assessment results, compiled after the elementary and middle school students took their standardized tests in November and the high school students in February. The theme of the presentation was “celebrate” because of the strong numbers.
First, Wilwert presented a chart showing the percent of students per grade who were proficient in reading. Percentages were also shown comparing male and female students, those in a low socioeconomic status and those who were not, as well as students with individual education plans and those who do not have one.
Of the 10 grades (2nd through 11th) analyzed, only three had fewer than 75 percent of students reading proficiently. One grade—the sophomore class—had 94 percent of students reading proficiently.
Wilwert also had an “apples to apples” chart, showing the same class’s proficiency percentage over a three-year period, which generally showed growth over time.
For the 2013-2014 school year, the district had a goal for students in grades 4, 5, 7 and 9 to demonstrate growth on the reading subtest of the Iowa Assessment. This year, each of those classes showed growth over 89 percent.
As with the reading scores, Wilwert also broke down the math scores. Of the same 10 grades analyzed, three grades (3, 4 and 5) had proficiency percentages below 75 percent. Three grades (8, 10 and 11) reached 90 percent or above.
The math apples to apples comparison showed growth over time in all but one grade. Of all students in grades 3, 4, 5, 7 and 9, each grade showed considerable growth from last year. Of this year’s 6th graders, 100 percent showed growth.
Wilwert also provided a science report, which must be reported and must have an annual goal, but is not part of No Child Left Behind. Of the same 10 grades, students ranged from 69.1 percent being proficient to 90.2 percent proficient.
In 2013-2014, the annual science goal was that grade 9 students will have a greater percentage of students proficient on the science subtest of the Iowa assessment than grade 8 students in 2012-2013. That goal was achieved, as 70 percent of students were proficient, rising two percent from last year.
Some basic information was provided on social studies, but Wilwert said the data does not count for anything. Wilwert said she found it interesting that the biggest gap between students with a low socioeconomic status and those without was in social studies, which she said could be attributable to a lack of resources or learning opportunities for some students.
The annual goals for next year, based off this data, will be presented in August or September.
2015 fiscal year calendar
The school board voted to go with hours for the upcoming school year, as opposed to days, which will preserve more PLC (professional learning communities) time. School will start on Wednesday, Aug. 20. Winter break will begin later, as there will be school Monday and Tuesday, Dec. 22 and 23. Holiday no school days, like President’s Day and the Monday after Easter, are also scheduled off days. There will only be school on those days if days need to be made up due to weather, like this year.