Aiken and Edgefield school districts saw significant gains in some subject areas and declines in others on the 2013 Palmetto Assessment of State Standards test, according to data released Thursday by the South Carolina Department of Education.
PASS is administered in the spring and tests pupils in third through eighth grades in English/language arts, math, science, social studies and writing.
In Aiken County, the biggest improvement came from third grade in social studies, with 78.6 percent of its pupils scoring “met” or “exemplary,” compared with 68.2 percent the previous year.
The largest decreases came from sixth and eighth grades. Only 61.7 percent of sixth-grade pupils met state standards in math, compared with last year’s 70.2 percent. In eighth grade, the percentage of pupils meeting standards in English/language arts and science declined by 8.1 and 8.8 percentage points, respectively.
“This last school year, schools focused on the new S.C. Common Core Standards and are preparing for a new assessment that will be aligned with the new standards,” Aiken County Public Schools Superintendent Elizabeth Everitt stated in a news release. “Although our PASS scores were not as strong as past results, we will use this information to pinpoint potential weaknesses in our curriculum.”
Individual Student Reports will be distributed to parents at the beginning of the school year, according to the release.
Like Aiken County, Edgefield County’s biggest improvement was with its third-grade pupils in social studies– 73 percent of the pupils met state standards, up 11.3 percentage points from 2012.
In Edgefield County, the biggest declines came from its fourth and fifth grades. In math, 65.5 percent of fifth-grade pupils met state standards, down 8.7 percentage points from 2012. Only 64.1 percent of fourth-grade pupils met science standards, down from 72.7 percent in 2012.
Visit ed.sc.gov/data/pass/2013 to view 2013 PASS results by state, district and school levels and demographic information.