WESTFIELD, NJ – In addition to numerous congratulatory announcements, the Westfield Board of Education shared the district’s 2015 PARCC results on Tuesday during the first meeting of the new year.
The results, which were sent home to parents in late December, are broken down in five scoring levels and assess a student’s academic performance according to grade-level expectations.
Assistant Superintendent Paul Pineiro reassured the public that Westfield students performed above the state of New Jersey and all other PARCC states nationally in both English Language Arts/Literacy and Math. According to Pineiro, the fact that participation rates varied widely throughout the state and parent concerns and politics impacted the level at which students attended to the tests also had significant importance.
“There was a lot going on last year in the newspapers and on television. We saw nationally probably at the federal level some discussions and hearings in government so this has been a hot topic, but seems to have settled down since the testing,” Pineiro said. “We survived and conducted the testing very well. We’re still going to hear some concerns about it, but here we handled it well.”
Pineiro also informed board members and the public that Westfield schools will not be using PARCC scores as a determining factor for student placement in courses and programs, as they are a new baseline and have only been in place for one year.
In ELA, more than 89 percent of Westfield students from grades 3-8 registered scores at Level 3 (Approaching Expecations) or better. Grades 9-11 saw a dip in performance, but had well over half its students perform at Level 3 or higher.
Westfield also performed exceptionally well in Mathematics, as 88 percent of students in grades 3-7 scored at Level 3 or higher. According to the board, PARCC Math 8 outcomes were not representative of grade 8 performances as a whole because roughly 30,000 NJ students participated in Algebra I instead.
While no definite dates have been set for 2015-16 PARCC testing, the board announced that grades 3-8 will participate between April 4 and May 13, and Westfield High School will participate between April 11 and May 20.