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Hawaii math proficiency up; reading holds steady

    Students listen to teacher Lori Sakaguchi in this file photo.

Hawaii public school students saw gains in math scores, while reading proficiency remained steady, Department of Education testing results released today show.

Statewide, 66 percent of students tested proficient in reading, down slightly from 67 percent in 2010.

Fifty-four percent tested proficient in math, from 48 percent in 2010.

“Hawaii’s educators and students deserve all the credit for once again achieving impressive gains in math — a subject that is the gateway to a seamless transition into colleges and careers — while holding reading scores steady,” Schools Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi said in a news release.

“Our focus will remain on supporting students and schools as we implement internationally-benchmarked common core standards, use data to gauge learning and adjust instruction in real time, and engage families and communities in our educational mission.”

Meanwhile, 38 percent of schools met “adequate yearly progress” goals for reading and math proficiency under the federal No Child Left Behind law, from 51 percent last year.

Officials say the drop in schools meeting AYP is largely because of rising annual benchmarks.

For schools to meet AYP this year, 72 percent of their students had to have tested proficient in reading and 64 percent proficient in math.

In 2010, schools met AYP if at least 58 percent of students were proficient in reading and 46 percent proficient in math.

Some 94,500 students in grades 3 through 8 and grade 10 took the Hawaii State Assessment tests in testing windows from October to May.

It was the first year that the test was administered online. Students also had at least three chances to take it, from one in previous years.

Third through sixth and eighth graders made significant gains in math, the results show, while proficiency levels for seventh and 10th graders remained steady.

Meanwhile, fourth, fifth and sixth graders gained ground in reading proficiency, while the other grades saw their scores dip.

Of the state’s 286 public schools, 110 met adequate yearly progress goals under the federal No Child Left Behind law.

Forty percent of regular public schools hit the standards, or 101 in all.

Nine of the state’s 31 public charter schools made AYP.

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