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Three GRPS schools among top in region in ACT composite score gains | Community Spirit

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Three GRPS schools among top in region in ACT composite score gains
Three GRPS schools among top in region in ACT composite score gains

Last year, only six schools in the region had a 0.6 point or greater gain on the ACT composite scores. This year, three Grand Rapids Public Schools – Creston, Union and City High – rank among the schools with the most significant gains in the ACT composite scores.

A half point or greater gain may not seem like much, but in the education world steeped in assessments with schools judged by their test scores, a 0.5 gain is significant and notably higher than the average. For Union High School, the 0.6 gain they earned has even greater significance as they continue to implement the necessary reforms to get off the state’s so-called 5% list. Union High earned a 0.6 gain, Creston a 0.6 gain, and City High a 0.5 gain. The average gains typically are around 0.2 or 0.3 points. Overall, the district’s composite score remained flat, but have steadily risen from 15.6 in 2007 to 16.9 in 2012.

“While we have a lot more work to do to elevate the MME/ACT scores to our college-ready expectations, we see these gains as symbolic of the new momentum and overall improvements taking place across the district,” said Teresa Weatherall Neal, Superintendent of Schools. “There is a new alignment taking place in the district, and in our schools, with teachers, principals, support staff and district leaders really starting to all row in the same direction. I am confident that this is and will continue to generate positive academic results.”

The district also noted that the MME “cut scores” were increased this year to better reflect college/career readiness standards. As a result, there was a decline in the proportion of students reaching proficiency, not just in GRPS, but in many school districts across the state. Creston High School stood out by beating the odds in reading proficiency with a 13% improvement on the number of students who were proficient or advanced.