Reading, writing top skills in WASL

More than 85 percent of 10th graders statewide met or exceeded standards on this year’s Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) tests in reading and writing according to state education officials Thursday.

South Kitsap School District officials on Monday are expected to announce their numbers were fairly similar and, unfortunately, the same applies in mathematics.

The state average of those passing math was just 54 percent.

But for most sophomores, who represent the first class that must pass the WASL to graduate, there are still plenty of options, says South Kitsap’s Assistant Superintendent of Instructional Services Kurt Wagner.

“Right now, we’re putting together support needs for those students who didn’t meet standards,” he said. Those near-miss students who still could pass will be given the option to take a summer WASL workshop.

Those far-miss students can take courses offered during the next school year.

State Superintendent of Public In-struction Terry Bergeson announced the early results during a news conference in Renton Thursday morning, congratulating those who passed, and, for other students, said, “There is time and support to get you there.”

Of the 71,136 sophomores statewide who took the reading test, 60,873 students met or exceeded the standard. More than half of the students – 43,758 – scored in Level 4, the highest performance level.

Writing scores showed impressive improvement, noted Bergeson.

Of the 70,812 sophomores who took the writing test, 59,196 met or exceeded the standard.

Of the 70,255 who took the mathematics test, 37,866 met or exceeded the standard.

The improvements in math were most noteworthy in the movement of students out of the lowest achievement level — a one-third reduction.

Wagner said it’s too early to know exactly how the district’s 850 sophomores did, since it can take districts a while to clean up data.

Students who tested, then moved to another district will be disqualified, and others meeting certain criteria get re-tests.

While early results show South Kitsap’s students were “similarly at or above the state level,” Wagner said officials and parents won’t get the final results until September.


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