Scores average in M-STEP

BY JESSICA STEELEY
Clarkston News Staff Writer

M-STEP and PSAT/SAT scores are back from tests last spring – Clarkston’s in the top third of all school districts in Oakland County, with Oakland the highest performing county in Michigan.
Many scores are up compared to last year, but most remain in the 40-50 percent proficient ranges.
The scores only tell part of the story, though, said Superintendent Dr. Rod Rock.
“Clarkston’s kids perform at the highest levels in the arts, academically, in our community, in non-school activities, and athletically,” Rock said. “We know Clarkston kids are more than their M-STEP scores. They are artists, and rock skippers, and Lego builders, and computer coders, and animal lovers, and writers.”
The M-STEP assessment is a tool to rank schools and districts on a single indicator and doesn’t say much about individual student growth, he said.
“Data helps us understand what is working, what needs to be improved, and where we’re at in relation to other districts,” said Staci Puzio, administrator of student growth and well-being.
Mathematics had an average proficiency across grades 3-8 of 52 percent. The 2015-2016 average proficiency was 49 percent. For Oakland County the math proficiency average was 51 percent and for the state, it was 38 percent.
For English Language Arts (ELA), the average proficiency across grades 3-8 was 58 percent, which was above state and county averages. The 2015-2016 average proficiency was 61 percent and districts across the county and state saw a dip in ELA performance this year.
For Science, grades 4, 7, and 11 were tested. Forty percent of 11 graders are proficient in science, same as the Oakland County average. Twenty percent are proficient in grades 4 and 7.
Students in grades 5, 8 and 11 were tested for Social Studies. Eleventh graders were 52 percent proficient, up from 44 percent last year, though under the Oakland County average of 54 percent. Grades 5 and 8 showed 34 percent proficiency, up from 30 percent last year and under the county average of 36 percent.
In PSAT Math, ninth graders increased from 58 percent to 63 percent this year, but 10th graders dipped to 46 percent. Eleventh graders also dipped to 46 percent for the SAT.
For the English Language Arts portion of the PSAT, 9th and 10th graders showed a decrease in percentages of students meeting college and career readiness. Eleventh graders taking the SAT had similar percentages from last year to this year.