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BSD Student Achievement Summary Report

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The purpose of this report is to provide a comprehensive overview of Brandon School Division (BSD) student achievement results for the 2014-15 school year. This report encompasses results from Brandon School Division divisional summative assessments as well as provincially mandated formative assessments at various grade levels and standards tests in Grade 12. This report also covers results of the Divisional Kindergarten Phonological Awareness Screening and the Divisional Kindergarten Continuum. All divisional assessments and Kindergarten Continuum assessments are criterion referenced (or outcome-based) to the particular curricula.

Unless otherwise stated within the report, MANE performance indicators (Meeting, Approaching, Not Meeting or Needs Ongoing Help, and Exceeding) are used to show students' level of achievement in critical competencies. Teachers use a collection of evidence to determine the performance indicator which best describes each student's level of competency according to pre-established curricular rubrics. In addition to descriptive statistics on the sheer percent-age of students at each level of performance, historical trend comparisons are included where possible. Furthermore, the impact of full day every day Kindergarten is briefly reported. Finally, this report includes detailed examinations of the achievement of specific learner groups.

Phonological Awareness: Improvements were seen from fall to spring in Kindergarten students' phonological awareness (from 19 to 38 out of a possible 50 points; and from 37% to 73% of students meeting/exceeding expectations). However, 13% of students entering Grade 1 will require additional supports in order to be successful, especially in reading.

Kindergarten Continuum:
Within both the English program and French Immersion program, 80% of students or more are meeting or exceeding expectations on five of the ten literacy skills, eleven of the twelve numeracy skills, and all of the fine motor skills assessed in June. As in previous years, the area of greatest challenge for students entering Grade 1 is in 'word recognition,' an important preliminary reading skill. Compared with the previous two years, there are slightly greater percentages of students meeting or exceeding most of the numeracy expectations this year.

Full Day Every Day Kindergarten:
Compared with half-time students, a greater percentage of FDED Kindergarten students ended the year meeting phonological awareness expectations, despite having started the year with lower average scores. This tendency for closing the achievement gap with FDED students was seen also on the Kindergarten Continuum assessments, in which FDED students tended to make greater gains or less loss than their half-time counterparts.

Divisional Summative Assessments:
For each of the literacy and numeracy skills assessed at the end of Grades 3, 5, and 7, no fewer than 85% of students are either 'exceeding,' 'meeting' or 'approaching' grade level expectations. At each grade level, reading comprehension is the literacy skill with the highest percentage of students exceeding expectations, and representing number is the numeracy skill with a relatively higher percentage of students meeting or exceeding expectations.

English Literacy:
Of the students assessed on the Grade 3 and Grade 8 provincial reading and writing assessments, 80% or greater are either 'meeting' or 'approaching' grade level expectations. Compared with the previous two years, there has been a slight increase in the percentage of students meeting the literacy skills assessed at both grade levels.

On the Grade 3 provincial numeracy assessment, between 84% and 91% are 'meeting' or 'approaching' expectations on the four competencies assessed. On the Grade 7 provincial numeracy assessment, results range from 79% of students 'meeting' or 'approaching' patterning expectations to 88% and 89% 'meeting' or 'approaching' in 'representing number' and 'decimals' respectively. Relative to the other math skills assessed on the provincial Grade 3 and 7 formative assessments, students have greatest success with 'representing number,' yet find 'mental math' and 'patterning' more challenging. These areas of strength and challenge are appearing consistently from year-to-year and are consistent with trends seen across the province.

French Literacy
: On each of the French literacy competencies assessed at Grades 4 and 8, between 84% and 96% of French Immersion students are either 'meeting' or 'approaching' grade level expectations. 'Critical response to text' is the competency with fewer students meeting expectations compared with the other reading competencies. Following conventions is the writing competency with fewest students meeting grade level expectations.

For 4 of the 5 engagement skills assessed across both English and French Immersion students, close to 80% of students are demonstrating the skills 'very often' or even 'almost always.' Students find self-assessment the most challenging area of engagement. "Using French as a tool for personal and social growth" is an engagement skill assessed in the French Immersion program only. While we have seen some improvements, in general, this skill continues to be 'emerging' for students in BSD and across the province.

Grade 12 Provincial Standards Tests:
BSD students continue to demonstrate strong Grade 12 Language Arts scores, with a greater percentage of students passing the test and a higher average score than seen in the provincial statistics. BSD results in Applied and Essential Mathematics are on par with results seen across the province, while Pre-Calculus scores are slightly lower within the Division as a whole compared with the province. On the Français langue seconde provincial standards test, BSD students had slightly higher average scores than the provincial average.

In general, there are greater percentages of girls meeting literacy expectations, with statistically significant differences in every writing competency at each of the summative assessment grades. While there are similar percentages of girls and boys meeting numeracy expectations in Grades 3 and 5, there are some significant gender differences in Kindergarten numeracy skills and one significant difference in Grade 7.

Learners of Aboriginal Heritage:
A smaller percentage of Aboriginal students are meeting expectations in all reading, writing, and numeracy competencies compared with non-Aboriginal students. This difference is seen from Kindergarten onward. These differences are especially prominent in writing and in numeracy.

English as an Additional Language Learners:
Significantly lower percentages of EAL students are meeting all Kindergarten reading and numeracy outcomes. Significantly lower percentages of EAL students are meeting reading and writing expectations in Grades 3, 5, and 7. In numeracy, the gap between EAL and non-EAL students exist, but the statistical significance of these differences is more inconsistent.

As this report indicates, student achievement continues to be progressively positive in the major areas of measurement from Kindergarten onward. Areas of greatest challenge are monitored continuously and utilized to inform School Development Planning and division-wide Strategic Planning.

Due to the division-wide use of an electronic gradebook at the Grade 1 through 8 levels starting in the 2015-2016 year, future year-end reports will include summative results from each of these grades.

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