Primary and Junior (Grade 3 and 6) EQAO results released
For Immediate Release
September 17, 2009
GUELPH, Ontario — Results for Upper Grand District School Board primary (grade 3) and junior (grade 6) students who wrote the provincial EQAO Assessments in May show that students’ scores increased in four of the six areas covered – primary writing (up five percent) and math (up one point), and junior reading and math (up three and one percent) – and in all areas are hovering near provincial averages.
Assessments for junior students show reading increasingly steadily, up three percentage points to 72% with a provincial average of 69%. Writing fell to 65%, while the province held steady at 67%. In math, the board’s average for those achieving at level three or four is 61%, with the province averaging 63%.
Preliminary analysis indicates that in primary writing, there was an increase over the previous year from 62 to 67 percent. The provincial results in writing are now 68%. Reading results decreased by one percentage point over the 2008 year and at 60 percent are one point below the provincial score. Student work in mathematics has risen one percentage point to 67% with a provincial average of 70%.
“While we’re close to provincial averages, we still have work to do,” said Bob Borden, chair of the board. “We have been following the provincial lead and utilizing materials and instructional methods that are focused on literacy and numeracy, but the results indicate that we still have students who are struggling.”
The assessments are based on the expectations in the Ontario Curriculum documents for Language and Mathematics. Students achieving at a level three or four are considered to have met the provincial standard.
Now that the testing has been in place for a number of years, the board can plot the results of the cohort: those students who were in grade 3 in 2006 and wrote the tests again in 2009 when they were enrolled in grade 6.
“We are seeing good cohort results in reading and writing for students who have moved
on from grade 3 to grade 6,” Mr. Borden remarked. This cohort has improved 10 points in reading and five in writing but has moved downward from 66 to 61% in math.
There is also a difference in the results for girls and boys, with boys not doing as well as girls in attaining a level three or four in all areas. Lower assessment levels for boys are a provincial trend, as well.
“We need a concentrated focus on our boys,” said Mr. Borden. “Their results have not been as good as for girls and we continue to explore strategies for helping them.”
“Closing that gender gap will certainly mean more improvement over time in our results and bring the percentage of boys who outnumber girls in scoring at level 2 (approaching the standard), up to level three.”
Over the past years, there has been a focus on junior reading which is evident in the steady progress of students. Grade 3 results are expected to improve now that the board is expending additional energy and providing extra support for the primary program.
The Board Improvement Plan and alignment of School Improvement Plans will focus more on detailed analysis of the EQAO results. This will help schools determine where they need to concentrate, and look carefully and critically at what practices need to be refined or changed. Additional support includes math pilot programs this year in 12 elementary schools, attention to good teaching practices and professional development for teachers.
“In the end, parents should be looking at the individual results and speaking to the teacher and the school to find ways to support their children at home”, Mr. Borden said. “It takes the school and the home working together to help students succeed.”
Individual student reports will be distributed to parents by October 23rd.
Full results are available on the Board’s website: https://www.ugdsb.ca/eqao/eqao.htm
For more information: Maggie McFadzen, Communications Officer, 519-822-4420, ext. 725
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