MOUNT PLEASANT, N.Y. – The New York State Department of Education has released the results of the English Language Arts (ELA) and math test scores for grades three through eight, showing scores for Mount Pleasant students dropped in many areas.
A recent change to the grading rubric has made it more difficult for students to achieve a level-four rating, the highest achievement.
Although the district's scores are above the county and state averages, and many results stayed around the same level as last year, some grade levels showed significant decreases from last year's tests.
Last school year was the first year with the new scoring rubric in the State of New York.
According to the results, in the third and seventh grade levels, students saw a significant drop in the percentage of students that reached proficiency or better, level three or four, in both English and math. In the seventh grade, 74 percent of students met the proficiency standard in English, which is down from 84 percent last year , the largest change this year. Seventh grade students also declined in math, where 80 percent met the proficiency standard, down from 87 percent last year.
In third grade, 74 percent of students scored in levels three and four in English. This is down from 80 percent last year. Third grade students also decreased in math, with 79 percent meeting the proficiency standard level, down from 85 percent last year.
Adelitia Ffrench-Rubin has a son in the Mount Pleasant Central School District who recently completed eight grade. She says she is glad the state has made changes to make it more difficult for a student to place proficiently.
"It's good because it places students where they belong instead of just pushing them through," said Ffrench-Rubin. "There's a lot of pressure on the students but I think it's the teacher's responsibility to do their jobs well."
Anna Accumanno, of Valhalla, had four children pass through the Mount Pleasant schools years ago, with her youngest currently age 21. That, however, did not stop her from speaking out against standardized testing in the state.
"I don't think it's an accurate way to portray students," said Accumanno. "With one test to determine so much, a student can just have a bad day and it can cost them."
Dr. Susan Guiney, the district’s superintendent, was unavailable to comment on the test scores Tuesday.