dismissal

Students prepare to board the buses Tuesday afternoon after the end of school at Christian County High School. Results for statewide tests were released, and high school students in CCPS scored higher than the state average in writing, one of several bright spots for the district.

The 2020-21 state testing data was publicly released for Christian County Public Schools and because of all the challenges faced by students and educators during the COVID-19 pandemic, special designations for low performing schools were not a part of the data.

The state of Kentucky applied for and was granted an accountability waiver for the past school year which did away with the designations of CSI and TSI for one year. And as a result, the test scores from the K-PREP will be just used by the local district to see what areas can be improved upon.

“We’re using it more as a temperature check for our students,” said Zach Hibbs, the district assessment coordinator for CCPS. “We’re not ecstatic with the results, but there are some bright spots to celebrate.”

One of those bright spots comes in the area of writing for high school students. Over 63% of CCPS high school students were at either the proficient or distinguished level, while the statewide average was just 57.2%.

High school reading came in at 32.5% proficient or distinguished, lower than the statewide average of 37.9%. High School math was 21.2%, lower than the 30.3% statewide average.

Also included in the test results are ACT scored for juniors who took that test last year. The district average was a score of 17 — just one point off the statewide average of 18.

Since high school was mostly hybrid last year, that likely impacted those students more than elementary children who received more in-person instruction.

“We found that we had a lot of high school students that were picking up extra adult responsibilities on those days when we were not in school,” said CCPS Director of Instruction Jessica Addison said. “I know that was a struggle for a lot of them and likely played a role in their test scores.”

Another bright spot was math scores for elementary and middle school students.

Elementary students were 33.8% proficient or distinguished while the statewide average was 31%. And middle school students were 28.6% proficient or distinguished, ahead of the state average of 27.8%.

Because of the pandemic, not all students were tested — and the number of students tested varied largely by district.

“We were in-person a lot more than many districts,” Hibbs said.

That resulted in approximately 80% of Christian County students taking the K-PREP in the spring. Without the entire student population being tested, that also makes the results somewhat incomplete.

“The test was also altered and looked really different than previous years,” Hibbs said. “So we might not be able to use it to compare like we did in 2018-19.”

The test last year was completely online for the first time — something that will continue in the future.

And while the results may not be a complete picture of how students are doing in CCPS, that doesn’t mean the data that is available won’t be helpful to the administration.

“As a district, we have a plan to build in additional support structures for our schools that are not as strong right now,” Hibbs said.

Some of the other scores released for the district include:

Elementary Reading:

  • 30.2% proficient or distinguished (statewide average was 39.5)

Middle School Reading:

  • 38.7% (statewide 44.0)
  • Elementary Science: 19.6% (statewide 25.1)

Middle School Science:

  • 18.0% (statewide 20.9)

High School Science: 20.4% (statewide 26.5)

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