The Pewaukee School District (PSD) in Wisconsin, like most school districts across the country, strives to improve student learning to open doors to bright futures. After more than a decade of using MAP® Growth™, they can speak first-hand of the value of the assessment data it provides. As Superintendent JoAnn Sternke puts it:
At one point we were at a crossroads with the opt-out movement. We decided to include all students in our locally-driven assessments, including MAP Growth. While the end-of-year state assessments are a static programmatic tool and accountability measure, we use the results from MAP Growth for learning, grouping students, and determining interventions.
PSD uses MAP Growth and the insights it provides to:
- measure student growth
- engage students in their own progress and learning
- establish goals with educators and students
- evaluate the accuracy of other assessment data
- predict students’ performance on state assessments and the ACT
By using MAP Growth data to inform instruction and involve students in their learning goals, the district empowers students to see MAP Growth performance as concrete evidence of their hard work. This broadens student-teacher and parent-teacher discussions around learning and helps support student growth.
And by incorporating MAP Growth assessment data into districtwide initiatives, students across the community can reach new heights. Some of these districtwide initiatives include:
- standards-based grading
- personalized learning
- program evaluation
- disciplinary literacy (teaching literacy across all content areas)
- full inclusion for students with special needs
So how has MAP Growth data made a difference in student performance and growth? The numbers speak for themselves. The district’s emphasis on continuous improvement has paid off with gains in student performance. PSD’s 2014/2015 ACT composite score of 24.5 exceeded averages for both Wisconsin (22.2) and the nation (21.0). Advanced Placement exam participation and scores are moving steadily upward, too; in 2013, students wrote 291 AP exams and 69 percent passed. Just two years later in 2015, 75 percent of the 433 exams submitted passed. PSD boasts one of the highest graduation rates in the state and in 2013 they received another tangible marker of success: the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the highest presidential honor given to American organizations for performance excellence.
As Sternke reflects:
When I see the journey that we’ve had with MAP Growth since 2004, I’m struck by how our district has evolved. Initially, the number of people that looked at the data wasn’t more than you could count on two hands. But now thousands of people see it and understand that it’s measuring growth. And that to me is the biggest message that we talk about with students—that with persistence and tenacity come growth.
For more information on how PSD is capitalizing on MAP Growth assessment data, download the case study here.