MOBILE COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — The Alabama Department of Education has released the ACAP standardized test scores for the 2020-2021 school year.
The scores show all of the school districts in the state and their proficiency in each subject tested, English Language Arts, Math, and Science.
This is the first year Alabama students took the ACAP, or Alabama Comprehensive Assessment Program, tests, which means these are the baseline numbers and there is nothing to compare them with.
The Alabama State Department of Education says that this test was rolled out after an extremely disruptive year and a half of school. The test was initially supposed to be taken by students in the spring of 2020 but was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Students took the exams in the spring of 2021.
This is what we have so far as we continue to analyze the data.
Along the Gulf Coast, some schools had more students test higher in some parts of the assessment. Math scores were consistently lower among all school districts along the Gulf Coast. Saraland City Schools tested the highest in all of the subjects.
If you only compare the county school districts, Baldwin County tested the highest in every subject along the Gulf Coast. Monroe and Conecuh Counties tested among the lowest in every subject.
|County||ELA PROFICIENCY||MATH PROFICIENCY||SCIENCE PROFICIENCY||ELA PARTICIPATION||MATH PARTICIPATION||SCIENCE PARTICIPATION|
|Gulf Shores City||63.81||40.52||51.97||98.51||98.85||99.25|
Monroe County Superintendent, Greg Shehan, says they were disappointed to see these numbers but were prepared.
“We knew there was going to be issues, we were already looking at our screeners and our test that we give before we received our state results back, that way we’re kind of in line and prepared for it,” said Shehan.
Shehan says they began working on improvements this summer. They began summer reading and math enhancement camps.
“We also sent out messages and letters to the parents and told them this is not going to be a problem that we’re going to fix during the day. We need parent involvement also when they go home,” said Shehan.
Schools say COVID interrupted many students learning during the last year and a half, which didn’t help.
“We have new data on a new test, it’s not so easily comparable to the old test because it’s a whole new test, whole new standards, new way of doing things, it’s all online. So they can’t necessarily look at this year’s data and compare them back to 2018 and make those kind of direct comparisons. it’s somewhat apples to oranges,” said Dr. Eric Mackey, the Alabama State Superintendent.
The data from the Alabama State Department of Education’s website is extensive. There are multiple different categories to compare test scores. Here’s how we looked at the data to compare districts.
We looked at the rows with all grades, gender, race, ethnicity, and subpopulation for each school district. In the data, the school district has columns that read Percent Level 1, Percent Level 2, Percent Level 3, and Percent Level 4.
The state tells us the percent proficient, which is another column in the data, is the numbers from ‘Percent Level 3’ and ‘Percent Level 4’ added together. Those two columns show which students passed the assessment. Percent Level 4 are those who performed excellently on the exams.
The only other information we looked at for this report was the participation rate.