La Cañada Unified School District Superintendent Wendy Sinnette told the Governing Board she wants to home in on climate, technology, instruction and supporting her staff this school year. Continue reading “Sinnette Promises to Focus on Climate, Tech, Support”
La Cañada High School doesn’t field a gymnastics team, but if did, the Spartans would be a force to be reckoned with. Tough as it might be to believe, there are, indeed, far more than five gymnasts in America. Continue reading “Balancing Gymnastics, Academics is a Contortionist Act at LCHS”
How would you improve on a plain coffee mug? Continue reading “Leading the Way in Engineering, Design at LCHS”
The second batch of online testing results released this week again placed La Cañada Unified School District’s students among the best-scoring in the state.
The annual California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress system ranked LCUSD’s 5th-, 6th- and 8th-graders tops in the state in English language arts/literacy, while its 6th-graders also rated first in math, according to mean scale score performance data reported by Lindi Dreibelbis, chief director of assessment.
LCUSD had even more top scores last year when the new test results debuted. In English language arts, the district’s students ranked first in the state in six of seven of the grades tested, and in math they were first in two grades.
“This is just the second year of testing and it’s still relatively new for all of us, so to have confirmation that we’re still one of the top-performing school districts in the state of California was just wonderful,” said Dreibelbis, who pointed out that, district-wide, students recorded higher mean scale scores in all but two grades.
In English, students earned a higher mean scale score this year than last in every grade except 7th. In math, the mean scale scores improved in every grade except 8th, which saw scores dip by less than one point, Dreibelbis said.
“We knew when the scores came out last year we had done very well,” Dreibelbis said. “So we’re just thrilled with the fact that we’ve really, really tried to improve on that and really demonstrated the district’s dedication to students.”
The new tests are more rigorous than the previous state assessments and are administered in grades 3-8 and 11. They are meant to align with the state’s academic standards and to assess grade-level learning that measures progress toward college and career readiness by determining four achievement levels: exceeded, met, nearly met and not met.
Across the state, of the 3.2 million students who took part in CAASPP testing, the percentage who met or exceeded standards increased in every grade and student group, the state’s Department of Education reported.
Nearly half of students who were tested met or exceeded standards in English and nearly four in 10 met or exceed standards in math.
In LCUSD schools, an average of 86% met or exceeded those marks, third-best in the state behind San Marino (88.5%) and Piedmont City (87%).
At La Cañada Elementary School, 90% or more of 3rd-, 4th-, 5th- and 6th-graders met or exceeded English standards, with 94% of the school’s 3rd-graders meeting that threshold in math testing.
At Palm Crest Elementary, the 6th-graders were tops with 95% of them meeting or exceeding math standards, while 93% met or exceeded them in English.
And at Paradise Canyon Elementary, 90% of 3rd-graders met or exceeded the mark in math.
There was more improvement at La Cañada High School, where 92% of juniors met or exceeded state English targets, for a 3% increase over the previous year’s junior results. In math, the juniors’ scores were better by 4% — climbing to 83% of the met-or-exceeded mark.
Measuring by mean scale scores, San Marino Unified produced six state-leading marks, with its 3rd-, 4th- and 7th-graders recording the top marks in English and its 3rd-, 4th- and 5th-graders doing the same in math. Palo Alto 11th-graders were tops in English and math, while its 8th-graders also scored best in math. And Piedmont City boasted the top scorers among 7th-grade math test-takers.
Dreibelbis said LCUSD prefers to focus on the mean scale scores because those allow the district to more deeply measure year-by-year growth, with 250 points within each achievement level.
“Last year, we felt like [3rd-grade scores] were a little lower than we were used to seeing,” she said.
“But this year, we see that not only did 3rd-grade scores improve 13% in ELA and math … we were also able to look at the cohort data and how well did they do. And the 3rd-graders last year who we thought, ‘Well, we’re surprised they didn’t perform better,’ they ended up growing 12% in English and 9% in math [as 4th-graders].”
Look good, feel good. Feel good, win.
La Cañada High School is well-regarded for many things: academics, choral arts, speech and debate. Football isn’t one of them. Continue reading “New Look, Fresh Start for LCHS Football”
The state has gotten serious about curbing absenteeism, creating a new accountability system to replace the former Academic Performance Index. The new system will include factors ranging from assessment results to graduation rates and, yes, chronic absenteeism, which is defined as a student being absent for 10% or more of the school year. Continue reading “New Attendance Policy Limits Make-Up Work”
As far as welcoming parties go, this one was special. This one was a first.
Nearly 380 La Cañada High School students volunteered to get up early and spend a few hours at school before the school year started this week. Continue reading “Link Crew Comes to the Rescue of Nervous Freshmen”
The clock has started for county officials to make a determination about the decades-long tug-of-war over the students living in the Sagebrush area of La Cañada Flintridge. Continue reading “Sagebrush Petition Certified by County”
Did you see him? He was right there, in the thick of it, at the turbulent center of the political universe.
If you tuned in to the Republican National Convention last week, you easily might have spotted Riley Owen. The 2016 La Cañada High School graduate was a regular presence on the floor at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, in the mix with delegates and political stars and pundits, soaking up the history as it was being written. Continue reading “Memorable Experience at the RNC”
By Avery Yang
The morning sun glitters off the many model granite countertops — some gray, some black, some an off-beige — on display at Coram Design Center. Continue reading “LCHS Grad Seeks to Fuse Non- and For-Profit Worlds”