Students in grades two through 11 take the standards test, along
with the Stanford 9, every spring. In the 2002-03 school year, the
SAT 9 will be replaced by the California Achievement Test.
The tests are aligned to state-adopted curriculum standards in
English/language arts, math, history, social science and science.
Approximately 48% of the district's ninth-grade enrollment was
tested in algebra, and 41% of those students came out with proficient
or advanced scores.
The tests are good at showing what teachers are teaching,
according to Terry Dutton, director of assessment and evaluation.
"The jump from eighth-to ninth-grade math is very difficult, but
important. We feel our ninth-graders are learning more," Dutton said.
"We are moving kids into algebra earlier than we had been doing
before, but we still have a long way to go."
Proficient and advanced English scores districtwide fall below 50%
in all grades, but are still above most state averages. Only 37% of
Glendale's fifth-grade students scored above the basic comprehension
standards on the test, reports show.
Glendale High School saw 250 students' scores rise this year by as
much as 20%. Many of those students will be given the privilege of
leaving campus for lunch once or twice each week, Co-principal Mike
"It forces us to teach to the standards on a daily basis, and
we've seen improvements across the board because of it," Livingston
The test doesn't necessarily ask students about things they have
learned, help their grade-point average or help them get into
college, according to 16-year-old Matthew Young, a junior at Clark
Magnet High School.
"It takes a week of doing nothing, and I don't see the relevance.
It tests teachers more than students," Young said. "Things come up
that were never even discussed in class. It's not like the
[Scholastic Assessment Test], which colleges actually look at."