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Thursday, July 10, 2014

State's youth continue to exceed with testing

Sunday, July 15, 2012

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Once again, Indiana's children are continuing to rise to meet and exceed expectations. In 2009, the Indiana Department of Education set very high goals, including a target for 90 percent of students to pass both the English/Language (E/LA) and Math sections of our Indiana Statewide Testing for Education Progress-Plus (ISTEP+) exam. Indiana students, and the teachers and administrators who work every day to teach our kids, are closer today than ever before to reaching that 90 percent goal.

For the third straight year, the percentage of student passing both E/LA and Math has increased -- reaching 71 percent this year, up from 63 percent in 2009. Indiana's students have increased their scores in every subject area on the ISTEP+ exam. Consider these increased from 2009 to today: E/LA scores are up 8 percent; Math scores have increased 9 percent; Science results are 7 percent higher; and Social Studies scores are up 9 percent. Our great teachers know students are capable of learning and achieving at high levels. This year's scores reinforce that belief by showing meaningful increases among all student subgroups, with an average increase of 12 percent for every group since 2009. Since 2009, the number of our English language learners passing both the E/LA and Math portions of ISTEP+ has increased by 13 percent; our free and reduced lunch students by 12 percent; our black students by 11 percent; our special education students by 12 percent; and our Hispanic students by 12 percent. These gains mean Indiana is making progress toward persistent achievement gaps. This ongoing, comprehensive improvement is an uncommon achievement when compared to the rest of the nation. Hoosier teachers, parents and students should all be incredibly proud of this progress. It's something everyone has worked very hard to achieve in such a short time. This year's ISTEP+ results are even more proof that something great is happening in Indiana classrooms. In a few short years, Indiana has transformed its education landscape -- raising expectations, providing quality options, increasing local flexibility, focusing on student achievement and recognizing excellence.