Newly released test score data shows the pandemic hindered students’ performance in English and math in Santa Barbara County and across the state.
For both the county and California, the percentage of students meeting or exceeding standard in English Language Arts dropped about 6 percentage points (from 47% in 2018/19 to 41% in 2021/2022).
The percentage of students meeting or exceeding standard in math declined by about 8 percentage points (from 36% in 2018/19 to 28% in 2021/2022).
“The data underscores the extraordinary disruption the pandemic caused on student learning and growth, and the critical importance of face-to-face, in-person instruction,” Susan Salcido, the superintendent of Santa Barbara County schools, said in a news release. “Now is the time to accelerate our efforts on every front. We are focused on targeted interventions, adapting, expanding and accelerating services to meet and exceed the supports that are essential to our students’ long-term success.”
The test scores show last spring’s results in math and English Language Arts on the 2021-22 California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress.
This is the first year of CAASPP testing results since 2019 because the State Board of Education suspended mandatory testing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the news release, Santa Barbara County school districts have had access to individual students’ results since earlier this school year and have been using the data to provide extra support to students.
Student scores in grades 3-8 and 11 are categorized into four achievement levels, indicating whether that performance has exceeded, met, nearly met or did not meet the standard.
The test results serve as a compass, a general idea of how students performed on a summative assessment on mathematics and English Language Arts, Dr. Salcido explained. “As educators, we look at this annual assessment in combination with more frequent, local, in-class assessments to provide personalized instruction that helps each student advance in their learning.”
The Santa Barbara County Education Office said it is working closely with local school districts to enhance learning and academic performance. Efforts include expanding preschool enrollment, supporting the rollout of transitional kindergarten, providing professional learning and planning support for childcare staff, teacher teams, and administrators as well as increasing access to mental health and wellness resources for students, families and school staffl
Later this year, the 2022 California School Dashboard will provide additional data with the release of state and local measures of absenteeism, graduation rates, suspension rates and English learner progress. The new dashboard data is expected to be public by the end of December.