State releases school progress report

Only Asian students meeting reading, math goals so far

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SEATTLE (AP) — Results of the state's yearly check on its goal of closing the proficiency gap among Washington state public school students by half for reading and mathematics was released Thursday, and it shows there is work left to do.

Tallied at the state level, only one student subgroup is meeting reading and math goals so far.

The statewide results show that Asian students are meeting the goals. No other group did. The students tested in these results are in grades third through eighth and 10th grade. The test was taken in the spring.

The state has until 2017 to close the proficiency gaps among students of different races, ethnicities and income levels, as part of a wavier it got from the federal government. It is Washington's answer to the federal education law known as No Child Left Behind. Washington has been granted a waiver to take a different approach to identifying and helping failing schools.

"The 2017 targets are realistic expectations for schools and subgroups, but they aren't the end goals," said state School Superintendent Randy Dorn in a statement. "It's important that all students reach their full potential and we will not stop working to ensure that happens."

In reading and math, white students and students of two or more races came close to meeting the set goals, but fell short by a couple of points.

Making comparisons

The results of the "Annual Measurable Objectives" released Thursday also allow school districts and parents to gauge progress. Last year was the first year the state used this measuring system.

Parents are able to compare their neighborhood school with the school down the road and decide if they want to try to move their child to a school that is doing a better job of helping kids like them.

This information is readily available, along with lots of other information about public schools, at the Washington State Report Card online. Click on AMO in the upper right hand section of the page and then choose your school using the dropdown menu on the left side of the page.