New Hampshire sees declining proficiency on statewide tests

October 23, 2017

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — The latest results of New Hampshire’s statewide assessment tests show a decline in proficiency in both English and math in grades three through eight.

Students in those grades take the Smarter Balanced test, a statewide assessment based on the Common Core standards.

Results released Monday show 58 percent of students who took the Smarter Balanced exams during the last school year were at or above proficiency in English, 3 percent less than the year before. Forty-nine percent were at or above proficiency in math, down 2 percent from the previous year.

For eleventh-graders who took the SAT, English scores held steady at 66 percent at or above proficiency, while math scores increased from 41 to 44 percent at or above proficiency.

Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut said with the exception of California, all the other states that participated in the Smarter Balanced consortium for 2016-17 saw a similar decline in their English results.

“We are obviously concerned about the decline in student performance and will be working closely with schools to understand the underlying drivers,” he said.

Schools and parents were provided with individual results last spring, but they weren’t validated and aggregated until now.

“Now that the data has been certified, we will do some deep analysis to understand the results, looking at how our districts, schools and subgroups performed,” said Sandie MacDonald, the education department’s administrator for student assessments.

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