Four Highland Park schools make Sun-Times Top 50 lists
ISAT results by school
Updated: November 9, 2012 12:48PM
HIGHLAND PARK — Three schools in North Shore District 112, as well as Highland Park High School, have landed on Sun-Times Media’s Top 50 lists of high-scoring Illinois schools based on their performance on state-mandated tests taken last spring.
Braeside Elementary School ranked 8th among more than 2,600 elementary schools in the state, based on the average reading and math scores of students who took the Illinois Standards Achievement Tests in March. The school also was 8th among the Top 50 elementary schools in the Chicago area.
Many of the schools that rank in the top 10 are gifted schools or use selective criteria to enroll students, while Braeside is an attendance-area school.
Ravinia Elementary School placed 14th among Chicago-area elementary schools and ranked 15th among all public elementary schools in the state.
The Sun-Times Media analysis looks at the average scale scores earned by individual students in reading and math in relation to those earned by other test takers in the state. The method results in a more precise comparison than the figure typically reported — the percentage of students meeting or exceeding standards.
According to the analysis, the average score among Braeside students in 2012 was higher than the scores earned by about 89 percent of pupils in the state, while Ravinia’s average topped 86 percent of the scores earned by test takers statewide.
Edgewood Middle School ranked 50th among Chicago-area middle schools.
Highland Park High School placed 15th among high schools, both in the Chicago area and statewide based on students’ performance on the Prairie State Achievement Exam, the test given to high school students in 11th grade.
The State Board of Education last week released the achievement results as part of the 2012 School Report Cards.
Not surprisingly, Braeside and Ravinia showed the highest percentages of students exceeding standards on the reading and math portions of the ISAT. The schools serve comparatively few limited-English and low-income pupils compared to other schools in the district.
While Oak Terrace School in Highwood posted lower passing rates in reading (72 percent) and math (90 percent) than other elementary schools in the district, the results were impressive for a school where 71 percent of students are Hispanic, 71 percent are low-income and 59 percent have limited-English proficiency.
“While we continue to experience an achievement gap between our Hispanic and white students, it has narrowed over the last five years,” said Heidi Wennstrom, assistant superintendent for Teaching and Learning.
She noted the percentage of Hispanic students meeting or exceeding standards districtwide has risen from 58 to 69 percent in reading and from 74 to 81 percent in math.
Wennstrom said that a cohort analysis tracking Oak Terrace students between third and fifth grade showed a 15-point jump in passing rates in reading and a 12-point improvement in math.
The cohort analysis also showed strong gains at Red Oak and Sherwood, which also house dual-language programs and serve high proportions of limited-English and Hispanic students.