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November 17, 2015

How Do Metro Atlanta Schools Score in New Georgia Milestone Assessment?

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The Georgia Department of Education released Monday the results of the Georgia Milestone Assessment test by district and by school.  The GaDOE had released the statewide average scores in September.  At that time, State Superintendent Richard Woods released the following statement:

“These results show a lower level of student proficiency than Georgians are used to seeing, but that does not mean Georgia students know less or that teachers are not doing a great job – it means they’ve been asked to clear a higher bar... Our previous assessment, the CRCT, set some of the lowest expectations for student proficiency in the nation, and that cannot continue. Georgia Milestones sets higher standards for our students and evens the playing field with the rest of the nation – and that’s essential if our students are going to succeed in college and their chosen careers, both of which are nationally competitive arenas. We will continue to increase our supports for both students and teachers to ensure this test is more meaningful for all involved.”

The Atlanta Journal Constitution provided an overview and analysis of yesterday's release which includes this excerpt:

A substantial proportion of third-grade students failed to pass English, a key marker of future academic success. Students in older urban districts struggled the most.

For instance, in DeKalb County 43.7 percent failed third grade English while in Atlanta Public Schools 41.3 percent failed. Other major metro districts had higher rates of students’ passing.

The Georgia Milestones replaced the old Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests and high school End of Course Tests, which were criticized as being too easy.

The Metro Atlanta Chamber supports rigorous testing for our children particularly in core competency areas such as math and english. As with any new implementation, there will need to be periods of time for adjusting to higher standards and new testing formats, and we are confident that our children will continue to improve and meet expectations over time.

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