Alabama’s public school students are struggling with the annual standardized test required by the Alabama State Department of Education, judging by recently released results for the 2014-2015 school year.
Though annual testing isn’t new, the ACT Aspire, first administered during the 2013-2014 school year, is. The test is given to students in third through eighth grade in math and reading, and in fifth and seventh grades in science.
Statewide, of the six grades tested, only in third grade were more than half the students proficient in math; in no grade were more than half the students proficient in reading.
The 850 kindergarten- through-fifth- grade students at Jefferson County’s Hueytown Elementary School have a message about education: Poverty doesn’t always mean lower scores on standardized tests.
On the ACT Aspire test they took last spring, in most grades and subjects, a higher percentage of the Hueytown students scored in the proficient range than did Jefferson County school district students overall or students statewide.
The accomplishment comes in a school where 58 percent of students are eligible for free or reduced-price meals and where students are a diverse mix – 52% are white, 39% are black and 6 percent are Hispanic.