NEWS RELEASE: October 31, 2013
CHARLOTTETOWN, PEI — Literacy and mathematics assessments show that student achievement is improving in several key areas in Prince Edward Island, says Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Alan McIsaac.
“The number of Grade 3 students who met the grade level expectation in reading rose from 62 percent in 2007 to 87 percent in 2013, while those who were experiencing difficulty dropped from 27 percent to nine percent during the same period,” said the minister. “We had a record number of students participating in this assessment, with only seven percent of students exempted from this year’s assessment, down from 14 percent in 2007.
Among Grade 6 students, 83 percent are now meeting or approaching expectations in reading, up from 63 percent in 2009.
Many new literacy resources and early intervention programs have been introduced in recent years such as the Primary Literacy Intervention Program and the Early Numeracy Intervention Program, in addition to Reading Recovery which has been in place for a numbers of years. These programs are also being evaluated, to ensure that our students are receiving the most effective support. Since 2007, Government has added more than 10 new literacy coaches, as well as new classroom resources and extensive in-servicing for teachers.
In response to results from previous math assessments, Grade 9 teachers were provided additional professional learning opportunities on math curriculum and effective teaching strategies, and our results show that student outcomes are improving. The number of Grade 9 students who met the grade level expectation of 65 percent or above in the math assessment has increased from 52 percent in 2012 to 64 percent in 2013.
Two new assessments were introduced this year, the Elementary Mathematics Assessment (Grade 6) and the Intermediate Literacy Assessment (Grade 9), providing baseline data.
“Similar to last year, the overall results for 2013 show that the investments we are making in learning are paying off, whether those investments are in literacy coaches, early interventions or professional curriculum resources,” said Minister McIsaac. “Investing in teachers through focused professional learning opportunities is often one of the best ways to improve student achievement.”
“The results provide valuable information on how well students are learning the curriculum, where the students may need help and how resources may be directed to support our education system,” said Elizabeth Costa, Director of Instructional Development and Achievement. “We are very pleased to have Island teachers involved in developing and marking the assessments, which are based on the curriculum used every day in Island classrooms. The results help teachers to plan instruction by indicating areas of the curriculum where students are doing well and where they can improve.”
The assessments give parents an idea of how well their child is doing in reading, writing and math at critical stages of learning. The reports have been sent home with students and the results are now available online. Parents are encouraged to take time to review the material and discuss the results with their child’s teacher.
For more information, visit the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development website at www.gov.pe.ca/eecd/ProvincialAssessment.
The Government of Prince Edward Island is committed to building a stronger education system and investing in the future of the province. Over the past six years, it has demonstrated this commitment by making significant investments in a provincial early learning system, a full-day kindergarten program, many early literacy and student achievement initiatives, as well as funding to ensure that post-secondary education is accessible and affordable for all Islanders.
For more information, contact Laura Steeves, Education and Early Childhood Development by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone (902) 368-6449.
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