Test Scores Improve Despite State Cuts
Manasquan schools super credits emphasis on proficiency in math and literacy skills
In the face of dramatic cuts in state funding, Manasquan schools, along with the rest of the state’s school districts, have actually improved their overall standardized test scores since 2009, according to a state report.
While the Department of Education report shows that, statewide, schools performed in 2010-2011 better or just as well on both the NJ ASK and HSPA standardized tests as they did in 2009-2010, Manasquan schools generally performed well above those averages and increased their ratio of students considered “advanced proficient” in math and language arts.
Schools Superintendent Geraldine Margin said she credits district students’ improvements with an increased focus on math and language arts standards through professional and curriculum development implemented during the last three years.
Margin said that the district has felt the pain of the state funding cuts, which forced schools to cut out-of-class programs, but a new emphasis on in-class support and a new textbook series has seemed to pay off.
“The reduction in funding has impacted us,” Margin said. “(The schools) have ramped up their in-class instruction with a new textbook series to help balance the loss.”
In 2010, the proportion of Manasquan High School students that tested either proficient or advanced proficient, or “passing,” on the HSPA in math ranked 7th among the county’s 25 districts, according to a report by the superintendent.
Among its statewide district factor group, or other New Jersey districts with similar demographics as Manasquan, such as Wall and Howell, the high school students ranked 10th among a field of 56, the report says.
Those rankings improved from 11th and 26th in 2009, respectively.
On the language arts literacy portion of the HSPA, the district’s high school students in 2010 ranked first in both the county and the DFG, the report says. The school improved its rankings from 15th and 39th the previous year, respectively.
The passing rates for high school students in math and language arts proficiency in 2010 were 58% and 83%, respectively, the report says.
The DFG and overall state averages in 2010 for passing rates in high school math were 45% and 35%, respectively.
The DFG and overall state averages in 2010 for passing rates in high school language arts literacy were 74% and 62 %, respectively.
In the Elementary School, the proportions of students in grades 3 through 8 proficient or above in math and language arts literacy on the NJ ASK were 84% and 92%, respectively, the report says.
The DFG and overall state averages in 2010 for passing rates in elementary school math were 83% and 75%, respectively.
The DFG and overall state averages in 2010 for passing rates in elementary school language arts literacy were 77% and 69%, respectively.