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District 27J third-grade TCAP scores keep close to state average

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By Crystal Nelson

BRIGHTON — A first look at School District 27J’s TCAP third-grade reading results show scores remaining close to the state average. 

Preliminary results from the Colorado Department of Education show School District 27J’s district average dropped 1.6 percentage points to 72 percent of students scoring proficient or advanced this year, down from 73.6 percent last year. 

The slight dip in the school district’s results reflects a statewide trend, where the state average of students reading at proficient or advanced levels dropped from 73 percent last year to 71.5 percent. 

District 27J Director of Organizational Management Peggy Robertson said the district continues to be near the state average, which they view as a very good thing.

“We have historically been at or above the state average in third-grade reading and we still are this year. We are still the highest in Adams County for our scores and for third grade reading and that we feel it is still a great accomplishment, so we know that our primary teachers are doing a great job  because it doesn’t all happen in the third grade,” she said. 

Third-grade reading scores were the highest at Landmark Academy, Foundations Academy at Reunion and West Ridge Elementary, where the number of students reading at proficient or advanced levels increased over last year. 

Reading scores at Landmark Academy improved by 17.6 percentage points to 94.1 percent of students reading at proficient or advanced levels. Foundations Academy saw its reading scores jump 7.9 percentage points to 86.9 percent of students scoring as proficient or advanced this year. At West Ridge Academy, the number of students scoring proficient or advanced levels was 81 percent, about a 1.2-percentage-point increase over last year. 

South Elementary also had an increase in the number of students scoring at proficient or advanced levels — from 54.9 percent last year to 62.7 percent — but still remains below the state average. 

Third-grade reading scores were the lowest at North and Northeast elementary schools — where a little over half of the students are reading at proficient or advanced levels — and Bromley East Charter School.

Although just over half of North Elementary’s third-graders scored proficient or advanced, the school showed improvements over last year. Third-grade reading scores at North improved by 14.7 percentage points from last year to 57.6 percent this year.

The number of third-graders reading at Northeast Elementary School decreased by 14.3 percentage points from 70.8 percent last year to 56.5 percent this year. Proficient and advanced scores also dropped by 9.9 percentage points at Bromley East Charter School — from 71 percent last year to 61.1 percent this year. 

Second Creek, Brantner and Thimmig elemtnary schools also saw decreases in the number of students scoring proficient or advanced this year. Despite two consecutive years of improved scores, Second Creek saw the biggest drop in the number of proficient or advanced scores. Scores decreased 17.8 percentage points from 84.4 percent in 2013 to 66.6 percent this year. 

Reading scores for students at Brantner Elementary School dropped 14.5 percentage points in its second year of testing – from 86.7 percent last year to 71.2 percent this year. Thimmig Elementary School’s reading scores dropped 8.4 percentage points from 80 percent last year to 71.6 percent this year. Reading scores at Thimmig had been improving over the last two years, with scores reaching their all-time high last year. 

Robertson said she hates to speculate why school scores fluctuated the way they did, but that principals will be able to look into the reasons further. She also pointed out that this will be the last time the district will be able to measure growth with the TCAP, as the state is switching to a new test – the Colorado Measure of Academic Success – next year.