Hayden eighth-graders' results mixed on math, science CSAPs

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— Hayden eighth-graders scored higher than the state average in science but scored below the state average in math on the Colorado Student Assessment Program.
Last spring, 27 Hayden eighth-graders took the statewide standardized tests in science and math.
Of that group, 63 percent, or 17 students, scored at the proficient level in science. Statewide, an average 45 percent students tested proficient in science.
Hayden students fell below the state average in math, however. While statewide, 33 percent of students scored at the proficient or advanced levels, in Hayden, 22 percent, or six students, scored proficient.
No Hayden eighth-graders have advanced math skills, according to the test results. Along with the six deemed proficient, 13 scored at the partially proficient level and eight had unsatisfactory scores.
Hayden Middle School principal Colleen Poole didn't expect her school's math scores to be very high.
"When you see the math scores in black and white, it is a little unnerving," she said. "I knew the students were not going to be at proficient. I know that math is not one of our strong areas.
"We are not happy that we scored that low. The math is something we are going to have to work on."
However, Poole is encouraged by the number of students, 13, who scored at the partially proficient level.
"These students are close to scoring at the proficient level," she said. "We just now need to push them over that edge."
Prior to the test results, the school has been working on improving its math curriculum.
"To improve in math is one of the district's goals," Poole said.
The school is now aligning its math curriculum with the state standards, a process that should be complete by the end of the year, she said.
Poole is hopeful that revamping the math curriculum will mean higher scores on CSAP are in the school's future.
"We see this as a challenge," she said. "It is something we intend to improve. I have an excellent teaching staff. We are going to do our best to improve the scores."
Just as the school's math scores highlight weaknesses in the math curriculum, the science scores show some of the school's strengths.
"I'm really pleased with the science scores," Poole said. "It shows that we really have a strong program."
According to the test results, 16 students scored at the proficient level and one student scored at advanced proficient.
A total of 10 students scored below proficient. Seven scored at the partially proficient level and three had unsatisfactory scores.
"There is always room for improvement," Poole said of the science results. "Science has typically been one of our strongest areas. There is a real strong interest in science in this area, and it is a fun subject for teachers to teach."
Hayden's results were better than the state average, where more than half of the students statewide failed to score proficient in science.
This was the first year that eighth-graders have been tested in those two subject areas in CSAP testing.

To reach Gary E. Salazar call 871-4205 or e-mail gsalazar @amigo.net

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