OXFORD – Last week, the state education department released the scores for the state tests given in grades 3-8 in English Language Arts and math. Prior to releasing this data, and well after the exams had been scored the Board of Regents agreed to raise the minimal number of points needed for a student to be labeled proficient. This change occurs as part of a larger list of initiatives being implemented by the Regents, including a more challenging sequenced state-wide curriculum, new evaluation criteria for teachers and principals, stronger preparation programs for teachers and principals and a more responsive data system.
The end result is that many more students in Oxford as well as across New York State will not be considered proficient in those subjects. In Oxford 45% of the students in ELA and 48% of them in math will be considered proficient based on the new cut scores. A review of the current data indicates that if the previous scaled scores remained, the percentage of Oxford students being considered proficient would have remained at 2009 levels.