PARCC test results were examined at Monday’s Board of Education meeting

The results were evaluated in comparison to the state averages.

The Tabernacle Board of Education reflected on last year’s test assessment results at Monday night’s meeting, as the summer comes to a close and the new school year approaches.

The meeting focused on a presentation by Barry Saide, director of curriculum and instruction, with reports on PARCC test data. PARCC stands for Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers and has been used as a standardized assessment in New Jersey for the past four years.

The assessment is used to measure two subject areas, English Language Arts and math, for students in third through eighth grades.

The scores from these assessments are broken into performance levels, ranging from one to five. One represents the expectations were not met; two represents they were partially met; three represents the student is approaching expectations; four represents the student has met expectations; and five represents the student has exceeded expectations.

Students are categorized by performance level based on their three-digit test scores for each subject, falling into level one if they scored between 650 and 690, level two if they scored between 700 and 724, level three if they scored between 725 and 749, and the expectations have been met when scoring at or above 750. Saide stated the district should aim for the 750 score.

The average test scores of last year from the Tabernacle Township School District were provided, showing a comparison to the average test scores in the state.

Grades four and eight met the scoring expectations for ELA along with meeting and exceeding the state averages, while grades three, five, six and seven fell into the level three category — slightly below the 750 mark.

In math, grade four, along with algebra students and geometry students, exceeded the state average, while the remaining grades fell slightly below.

Concerns were raised by board members about how accurate of a representation these test scores really are, taking into account factors such as students who opted out of taking the test, those with learning disabilities and those who didn’t actively try their best on the assessment.

A cohort study will be done based on the test results from past few years, along with results in the years to come, to gain a deeper understanding of the number of students who have improving test scores and what can be done to increase test scores even further.

The next regular board meeting will be held on Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. at Kenneth R. Olson Middle School.