Little Compton students outpace state in science

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UnknownLITTLE COMPTON — Results of NECAP science testing last spring for Little Compton fourth-grade and eighth-grade students announced recently showed that 51.3 percent of the students were considered science-proficient.

The percentage of Little Compton students at this level is well above the numbers statewide where 34 percent of students tested proficient in science.

The Little Compton results this year, however, reflect an overall decline of 7.2 percent in the percentage of students considered proficient compared with the year before (2012).

In 2012, 58.4 percent of Little Compton students tested in science were considered proficient, while in 2013, 51.3 percent were so-considered.

That downward course was matched at the state level, which saw a decline from 34.8 to 33.8 percent deemed proficient among the 31,956 students in grades four, eight, and eleven throughout the state who took the science NECAP tests in May, 2013.

“Science has been and continues to be a concern for many districts when it comes to the NECAP assessment,” said Wilbur & McMahon Principal Joao Arruda.

“At Wilbur and McMahon School we do our best to educate our students in science, and we have seen the fruits of our labor. We are slowly progressing, but we are successfully progressing. When we look at the scores of other districts, we are extremely happy with ours, and that invigorates us to continue to do well. We are in the process of thinking ‘out of the box’ for next school year as we strive to progress in the science world.”

The science decline from last year to this amng Little Compton students, according to RIDE, is not considered “statistically significant.”

A total of 78 Wilbur & McMahon students took the science test last spring between May 6 and 23, about evenly divided (36/42) between fourth-graders and eighth-graders.

Both groups experienced declines from the year before in the percentages deemed proficient. Fourth-graders were down 6.8 percent (from 70.7 down to 63.9) and eighth-graders were down 4.0 percent (from 44.4 down to 40.5).

Little Compton student scores over the time period 2008 to 2013 were more positive, showing an overall increase in the percentages considered  proficient in science for both grades combined of 16.6 percent.

For that time frame, and broken down by grade levels, fourth-graders pegged a 13.9 percent increase and eighth-graders a 19.4 percent increase in proficiency.

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