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Oklahoma students show gains in most state exams

Oklahoma students showed improvement in most subjects, according to test results released Thursday to the state Board of Education. The biggest jump came in algebra scores.
BY CARRIE COPPERNOLL Modified: July 26, 2012 at 8:34 pm •  Published: July 27, 2012

Oklahoma students did better on state exams this year than last year, with the biggest improvement seen in math.

State testing results were released Thursday to the state Board of Education. State employees are expected to release more detailed information next week.

Districts already have received scores, and district officials can release individual scores to parents.

“All in all, I think these students are doing better on these tests,” said Joyce DeFehr, the state executive director of assessments.

This year, 74 percent of high school students who took an end-of-instruction Algebra II test scored high enough to be deemed “proficient.” It was an 8 percentage point increase compared to last year.

Only 54 percent of students were proficient in Algebra II in 2008.

The pass rate for Algebra I was 82 percent, which was 3 percentage points higher than last year. About 82 percent of students who took the geometry test also passed, up 4 percentage points.

Results weren't so clear for younger students.

Math and reading scores were up or level for students in third through eighth grades, according to state data. About 75 percent of students were proficient in those subjects, meaning about 1 in 4 Oklahoma students is behind.

Writing test results were mixed. About 90 percent of eighth-graders were dubbed proficient in writing — a 5 percentage point gain from last year. But only 74 percent of fifth-graders were considered proficient — a 4 percentage point drop from last year.