Delaware Scores Double Digit Gains and a Bronze Medal

July 20th, 2012

Category: News

A few weeks ago I commented to some folks that things were looking up in Delaware’s public schools, and that the “flywheel” appeared to be turning. Yesterday’s news from the Delaware Department of Education did not disappoint.

Compared to one year ago, more than 10,000 additional children are proficient in reading, and more than 9,000 are in math, statewide.  With 120,000 children across Delaware’s K-12 system, this works out to the equivalent of increasing the gains for every single child in an entire grade.  Something is working.  The key drivers of these performance gains will become evident once the state conducts deeper analysis, which we’ll highlight on our blog. In the meantime, we should all be thanking the folks that are making this happen in our classrooms.

In addition to this remarkable milestone, a new report on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) ranks Delaware third nationwide in student gains over a 19-year period. The report, considered the gold standard of measuring educational achievement, compares scores both on a state-by-state basis and between the U.S. and other nations.  We were in an elite group – Maryland (1), Florida (2), Delaware (3), Massachusetts (4).  The report concluded that, if all states had progressed as fast as these four states, that it would be “enough to bring the U.S. within the range of the world’s leaders…”

We obviously all still have a lot of work to do, but as the public and private sector leaders that built the foundation for where we are today look at the gains thus far, I hope they feel a sense of pride.  And for those educators gearing up for school next month, I hope they feel some wind in their sails. Their hard work is paying off.

Visit our blog next week for in-depth analysis of the assessment results with a focus on schools’ outstanding growth and a school-to-school comparison.

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Paul Herdman



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