Fort Worth schools gain ground in Texas end-of-course exams

The percentage of high school students in the Fort Worth School District who passed school leaving exams increased this year from two years ago, according to data released Monday by the Texas Education Agency.

The percentage of high school students in the Fort Worth School District who passed school leaving exams increased this year from two years ago, according to data released Monday by the Texas Education Agency.

Star-Telegram

The percentage of high school students in the Fort Worth School District who passed school leaving exams increased this year from two years ago, according to data released Monday by the Texas Education Agency.

But the percentage of Fort Worth students passing the exam still lags behind pre-pandemic levels in all but one subject.

Texas students must pass course completion exams in English I, English II, Algebra I, Biology, and United States History before graduating from high school. Students who do not pass the exam the first time are allowed to retake it.

The percentage of Fort Worth students who achieved grade level on the English I exam remained steady at 49% this year, after declining 52% between Spring 2019 and Spring 2021. In English II, 41% of students reached grade level this year, a four-point improvement from last year and spring 2019, nearly a year before the COVID-19 pandemic began.

In Algebra I and Biology, Fort Worth students caught up this year after posting declines during the pandemic. In Algebra I, 23% of students reached grade level this year, compared to 17% last year. Last year’s total represented a sharp drop from pre-pandemic levels: in spring 2019, 48% had reached the grade level of Algebra Section I. In biology, 70% of students reached the grade level in the exam, compared to 66% last year. In spring 2019, 81% of students achieved grade level results.

In US history, 56% of Fort Worth students achieved grade level results this year, up from 53% last year. Before the pandemic, 66% of students were achieving grades.

Texas high school students are gaining ground across the state

Statewide, scores rose slightly in the three subjects in which they fell during the pandemic: Algebra I, Biology and United States History. In Algebra I, the number of students meeting grade level on the test increased five percentage points, from 41% last year to 46% this year. In Biology, it climbed three points, from 54% last year to 57% this year. And in US history, it jumped two points, from 69% last year to 71% this year.

Scores in English I and II improved by a few points between 2019 and 2021. National education officials said the scores indicated students suffered fewer setbacks in those subjects during the pandemic. This year, the percentage of students who scored in grade level English I slipped two points, from 50% last year to 48% this year. In English II, the percentage of students performing academically remained stable at 57%.

In a statement, Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath said the results are an indication that the school stimulus plan the state enacted in response to the pandemic is paying off for students.

“We have made progress to date, but there is still work to be done to fully recover from the academic effects of the COVID slide, Morath said. “We are confident that we will get there as educators in Texas strive to help their students achieve the necessary academic gains.”

Under House Bill 4545, which Texas lawmakers passed last year, students who don’t pass the test are entitled to either 30 hours of focused tutoring or to be placed in a class with a high-performing teacher. But many districts in the state, including Fort Worth, have struggled to find enough tutors to meet that threshold.

The agency is expected to release STAAR results showing how students in grades 3 through 8 performed in reading and math on Friday. At a district board meeting last February, a Fort Worth district official presented projections showing no growth in third-grade reading and modest math growth from last year. . The district predicted that 26% of third-graders would reach grade level in reading on this year’s test.

End of course exam results were also released Monday for the other Tarrant County districts.

Arlington CIO

In the Arlington School District, candidates showed declines in English and gains in other subjects. This year, 38% of all applicants reached the Algebra I grade level, up from 26% last year. In US history, 64% reached grade level, up from 63% last year. In biology, 46% reached grade level this year, the same percentage as last year. In English I, 40% reached grade level, down from 46% last year. In English II, 62% reached grade level, down from 66% last year.

ISD North West

The percentage of students reaching grade level in the Northwestern School District has dropped in almost every subject. In Algebra I, 57% of students achieved grade level this year, compared to 60% last year. In biology, 72% reached grade level this year, compared to 74% last year. In English I, 63% achieved grade level this year, up from 69% last year. In English II, 72% achieved grade level this year, the same percentage as last year. And in US history, 84% reached grade level, up from 86% last year.

CIO Keller

The percentage of students reaching grade level at Keller has increased slightly from last year in almost all subjects. In Algebra I, 56% reached grade level, up from 52% last year. In biology, 78% reached grade level, up from 72% last year. In English I, 69% achieved grade level this year, up from 75% last year. In English II, 79% achieved grade level this year, compared to 76% last year. In US history, 86 percent reached grade level this year, the same percentage as last year.

Mansfield CIO

Scores in the Mansfield School District improved in some subjects and declined in others. In Algebra I, 63% of students achieved grade level marks this year, up from 56% last year. In biology, 63% scored at grade level this year, up from 66% last year. In English I, 58% scored grade level this year, up from 66% last year. In English II, 68% achieved grade level marks this year, up from 70% last year. In US history, 80% earned grade level grades this year, up from 78% last year.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram Related Stories

Silas Allen is an education journalist who focuses on challenges and possible solutions in the Fort Worth school system. Allen graduated from the University of Missouri. Before coming to the Star-Telegram, he covered education and other topics in the Stillwater and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma newspapers. He was also editor of the Dallas Observer, where he wrote about K-12 and higher education. He was born and raised in southeastern Missouri.

Comments are closed.