CPS Elementary Schools Hit Eleventh Consecutive Year of ISAT Growth 

Pioneer Schools show promise by nearly tripling the District’s average growth in Meets/Exceeds; quadrupling in the Exceeds category


July 16, 2012


Chicago Public Schools (CPS) today released preliminary data from the 2012 Illinois State Achievement Test (ISAT) showing the District’s highest Meets/Exceeds (M/E) composite score at a record 74.2 percent. Meanwhile the District’s Full Day Pioneer Schools, which includes schools that lengthened their day in School Year 12/13, had growth that well surpassed the District average. Pioneer School growth in M/E tripled that of the District and quadrupled the District’s growth in the Exceeds category.


The District’s M/E composite score increased 0.9 percentage points over last year, while the Exceeds composite score came in at 17.8 percent, an increase of 0.7 percentage points. The M/E performance level reflects the State’s minimum bar for proficiency. The Exceeds performance level is more rigorous, and researchers have found that it better predicts success on college entrance exams.


Were pleased to see academic achievement among our students continues to grow, but its clear we still have work to do, said CPS CEO Jean-Claude Brizard. Thats why weve spent this year focusing on initiatives that will give teachers and students the time and tools they need to boost achievement in the classroom, resulting in a high-quality Full Day for all schools beginning next school year.

Beginning last fall through January of this year, 13 schools lengthened their school day to 7.5 hours from a 5.45 hour day as part of the District’s Full Day Pioneer Program. Of those 13, five schools launched their Full Day in September at the start of the school year. Preliminary scores revealed that those five Pioneer Schools even further surpassed District average growth – these schools outpaced the District average growth by over seven times in M/E category, and nearly 13 times in the Exceeds category.


Over the past year, each CPS school has been involved in a rigorous planning process to construct a high quality Full School Day that best meets the needs of their own student body. This will allow CPS to move away from one of the shortest school days and years of all the largest cities in America to getting students on par with their peers across the country, and providing students and teachers with the time they need to boost student learning.


The Full School Day will include the implementation of Common Core State Standards (CCSS), which will create a more rigorous curriculum to better prepare students for college and career. It will also allow for a new instructional framework that will better support teachers to improve the quality of instruction delivered to students in the classroom. To further support schools in this process, the district added over $130 million in discretionary funding to give principals and school communities flexibility to create a quality, Full Day that best meets the academic needs of their unique student body.


Preliminary ISAT results also revealed that AUSL turnaround schools nearly tripled the districts average in M/E growth, with an increase of 2.5 percentage points. This marks the sixth consecutive year of growth for AUSL turnaround schools, as they continue to provide students at some of the lowest performing schools with access to a higher quality education that has led to dramatic increases in student achievement.


In addition to gains on the composite, CPS has seen gains in each subject area with an increase in M/E of 0.8 percentage points in reading, 1 percentage point in math and 0.8 percentage points in science. Exceeds is up in each subject area as well with an increase of 0.4 percentage points in reading, 1 percentage point in math and 0.9 percentage points in science. Charter schools are continuing to out-perform the district’s non-charter schools with growth in M/E of 1.2 percentage points and growth in Exceeds of 1 percentage point. 


About CPS

Chicago Public Schools serves 404,000 students in 675 schools. It is the nation’s third-largest school district.


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