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RCSD 2022 State Data Results Mirror California Performance. District Driving Plan of Empowering Teachers and Learners

RCSD 2022 State Data Results Mirror California Performance. District Driving Plan of Empowering Teachers and Learners

Recent state assessment results show the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on progress with student achievement across California including in Redwood City School District (RCSD). The California Department of Education (CDE) released the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) results in which all California students participated during the spring of the 2021–22 school year.

The 2022 CAASPP results show that both California and RCSD scores fell in both subject areas, English language arts and mathematics. This is a first for RCSD, which had been seeing steady increases in academic progress each year pre-pandemic. 

“We have been analyzing the data and while we are disappointed, we are also, unfortunately, not surprised,” said Superintendent Dr. John Baker, adding that using the local assessment tool had already prompted the district to implement proactive measures.

“All of us witnessed the turmoil the pandemic has caused around the world and we can’t expect children to do their very best schoolwork when they were not physically at school and experienced unprecedented distractions and perhaps the loss of loved ones.”

Added Dr. Baker, “While the state data is only one piece of information we use to assess student knowledge and progress, it does confirm what we had studied using our local assessment system. Making data-driven decisions, we have recently focused our resources and efforts on strong classroom instruction and targeted interventions to improve the school experience for our students now that we are back in person. I am grateful for the great team that we have in RCSD as we will need their talent, expertise, and commitment as we work together with our families to get our students back on track.”

The 2022 CAASPP Results:

  • English language arts: 45% of RCSD students performed in the Standard Met and the Standard Exceeded achievement levels of the English language arts assessment, which is 9% lower than when students last tested in 2019 at 54% meeting and exceeding.

  • Mathematics: 36% of RCSD students performed in the Standard Met and the Standard Exceeded achievement levels of the mathematics assessment, which is a 10% decrease from 2019 when students last tested in 2019 at 46% meeting and exceeding.

  California in 2019 RCSD in 2019 California in 2022 RCSD in 2022
English Language Arts 51% 54% 47% 45%
Mathematics 40% 46% 33% 36%

RCSD’s Progress Pre-Pandemic:

This year’s decline is in direct contrast to the progress RCSD students were achieving pre-pandemic with steady increases in both subject areas. In fact, in 2019, RCSD students had improved 15% from the 2015 baseline in English language arts and 14% in mathematics.

RCSD’s Action Plan:

The decline highlights the importance toward learning recovery, which is work RCSD has already implemented using local tools and the support of federal and state funding. 

“We want our students to have the best educational experience they can have,” says Liz Wolfe, the school district’s assistant superintendent of educational services.

“We are using an array of tools and research-based strategies to help each individual student drive their learning and thus address their academic and social needs. Ultimately, this targeted support will lead to gains in both local and state assessment such as we have seen in the past.”

Staying ahead of the CAASPP data recently released, RCSD has already been using local assessments to help make data-driven decisions addressing student needs through focused efforts such as the following strategies:

Empowering Teachers with Professional Development:

  • 1:1 Teacher on Special Assignment (TOSA) supports with classroom teachers

  • Retired teachers returning to RCSD to support teachers who are early in their careers 

  • Lesson planning: A focus on the development of engaging lessons to empower students 

Empowering Administrators with Professional Development:

  • Emphasis on Tier I instruction of the MTSS framework for successful interventions. MTSS is the California Department of Education’s (CDE) integrated, comprehensive framework that focuses on all students’ academic, behavioral, and social success. 

  • A focus on analyzing iReady results to meet growth targets. iReady is the district’s local assessment tool. 

  • A focus on each school’s School Plan for Student Achievement (SPSA), which include new actions and services. 

Empowering Learners:

  • Providing grade level content instruction that engages students through a variety of choices and participation strategies that are designed to meet the diversity of their needs and accelerate their learning.

  • Providing new and additional supports for students across the school district such as reading intervention teachers, tutoring, mental health clinicians at each school, and expanded learning opportunities after the regular school day.

About the CAASPP:

RCSD students in grades 3-8 participated in the 2021 spring administration of the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments for English language arts/literacy and mathematics. These assessments are aligned to the rigorous Common Core State Standards (CCSS), which challenges students to apply their knowledge and critical thinking skills. Student scores in the assessments are grouped into four achievement levels—Standard Exceeded, Standard Met, Standard Nearly Met, and Standard Not Met. 

The Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments for English language arts/literacy and mathematics measure depth of understanding, writing, research and problem-solving skills, and consist of two parts. Students take a computer adaptive test providing them with a wider range of questions tailored to more accurately identify the knowledge and skills they have mastered. 

Considering Context of Assessment Results: 

Data from the 2021–22 spring assessments should be considered “baseline data” for measuring student progress going forward due to the challenges presented by the pandemic.

In the 2019–20 school year, a year in which schools quickly pivoted to at-home learning due to COVID-19, the U.S. Department of Education waived all testing requirements. In 2020-21, RCSD used iReady, its local assessment system.  

CAASPP assessment results are available on the Test Results for California’s Assessments website.