Collaboration in Civic Spheres

WA achievement test pass rates mostly stagnant since 2006

by Matt Rosenberg March 11th, 2013


Recently updated state data packaged into customizable visualizations through the University of Washington-Bothell’s Center For Education Data and Research and its Washington Achievement Data Explorer (WADE) tool show that for third, fourth, fifth, eighth and tenth-graders in Washington, average statewide pass rates on state achievement tests in math and reading have been either relatively flat or down between 2006 and 2012. Pass rates on the state tests have grown for sixth and seventh-graders. A series of visualizations follow; as we mine the OSPI/WADE data on statewide pass rate progress for all grades taking the tests. By clicking on “Explore Data” in any of the visualizations, users can enter WADE’s Google Public Data Explorer interface and add in other school districts to compare results to the statewide data.

Some previous reports we’ve generated here recently have compared statewide eighth-grade pass rates on the state math and reading tests with results from among major urban region school districts statewide; and from districts in Pierce, Snohomish and King counties. Now we’ll dive in to the state average pass rate results by grade – and progress, if any – from 2006 through 2012. Hover over the graph line for exact rates by year.


Statewide pass-rate growth in the state math achievement test of third-graders in Washington public schools was a scant 1.1 percent between 2006 and 2012.

In reading third-graders also showed little improvement overall in the state test pass rate, just .3 percent over the same seven years.

Fourth-grader math pass rates grew less than one percent from 2006 through 2012.

Fourth grade reading pass rates dropped 10 percent between 2006 and 2012, though setting the clock back to 2002, they were up four percent by last year.

Fifth-grade math pass rates were up 8 points over seven years.

Fifth grade reading test pass rates were down six percent from 2006 to 2012.

Sixth-grade math test pass rates grew from 50 percent in 2006 to 62 percent in 2012, and those for reading four percent, to 71.3

Seventh-grade results are a bright spot, relatively. Seventh-graders showed a gain of almost 11 percent in math test pass rates from 2006, and even an steeper climb compared to 2002.

It was a similar story for seventh-graders on the state reading test.

For eighth-graders taking the math achievement test, 49.7 percent met the standard in 2006 versus 56.6 percent in 2012.

On the state’s reading achievement test, the pass rate statewide for eighth-graders actually declined, from 71.3 percent in 2006 to 68.4 percent in 2012.

Tenth-graders math test pass rates dropped nearly 10 points between 2006 and 2010; a new math achievement test for 10-graders is now being developed by the state.

Tenth-grade reading test pass rates rose markedly from 2002 to 2006 – but are down two percent between 2006 and 2012.

RELATED:

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  • State Report: K-12 Spending Hikes Would yield Modest Gains
  • Washington In Bottom Third In On-Time Graduation Rates

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