|The results are in and Pleasanton continues to excel among other schools in the state, according to data recently released by the California Department of Education.
The Accountability Progress Report includes results from the STAR (Standardized Testing and Reporting) testing and the California High School Exit Exam from the 2007-08 school year and is shown through the Academic Performance Index, or API scores. District-wide the schools continued the trend of exceeding the state's 800-point target standard, which is based out of a 1,000-total-point scale.
Schools seeing the biggest gains this year, as compared to last year, were Village High, up 28 points, and Donlon Elementary, up 26 points. Alternately, Lydiksen Elementary fell 18 points and Valley View Elementary dropped by 10 points.
Harvest Park Middle and Amador Valley and Foothill high schools were the only in the district that failed to meet some target growth standards, in relation to subgroup student scores.
Overall, school districts across the state showed an 8 percent increase over last year. While California Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell said the results show progress, he called the achievement gap between white and Asian students and black, Latino and English language learners "unacceptably wide."
Pleasanton Superintendent John Casey has previously said this gap is of concern to the district and identified it as one of their goals going into the 2008-09 school year.
Reports show that just over half of the state schools are meeting federal standards set by the No Child Left Behind , which focuses on meeting a "proficient" level. The state schools, however, are measured by improvement and give more points for growth. O'Connell attributed the drop in federal scores to the raising of the federal target by 11 points.
When federal standards are no met, schools are placed on an improvement program until they log in two consecutive years of meeting the standards. This year, more than 250 California schools were placed on the improvement program, with 116 schools exiting the program.
O'Connell also recently announced that several school districts, including Pleasanton, will receive funds for school construction, modernization and repair. The State Allocation Board awarded $259 million dollars to 69 school districts and county offices of education, as well as $13 million in emergency repair funds were awarded to several schools statewide.
Foothill High was one of two schools in Alameda County to receive funds, totaling $1,869,491
2008 API Scores
(School, 2008 score, 2007 score, difference)
PUSD: 897, 893, 4
Alisal Elementary: 907, 897, 10
Donlon Elementary: 926, 900, 26
Fairlands Elementary: 932, 915, 17
Hearst Elementary: 940, 930, 10
Lydiksen Elementary: 881, 899, -18
Mohr Elementary: 959, 961, -2
Valley View Elementary: 905, 915, -10
Vintage Hills Elementary: 925, 916, 9
Walnut Grove Elementary: 915, 922, -7
Hart Middle: 906, 895, 11
Harvest Park Middle: 922, 899, 23
Pleasanton Middle: 924, 905, 19
Amador Valley High: 967, 870, -3
Foothill High: 878, 884, -6
Village High: 612*, 584*, 28
*This API is calculated for a small school or LEA, defined as having between 11 and 99 valid STAR program test scores included. APIs based on small numbers of students are less reliable and therefore should be carefully interpreted.
Are you receiving Express, our free daily e-mail edition? See a sample and sign-up for Express.