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County students need help in math

By Stephen Uhler, The Daily Observer

Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School in Pembroke is one of many schools whose students did well in EQAO testing.

Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School in Pembroke is one of many schools whose students did well in EQAO testing.

Renfrew County’s elementary students continue to score near or above provincial averages in standardized testing.

 

However, many are facing challenges when it comes to Grade 6 math.

The Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) issued its latest provincial test results last week, and they showed students at all four school boards - Renfrew County District School Board (RCDSB), the Renfrew County Catholic District School Board (RCCDSB), the Eastern Ontario French Language Public School Board (CEPEO) which includes l’Equinoxe public school, and East-Central French Language Catholic School Board (CECCE) which has Jeanne-Lajoie as part of its family - are doing well in reading and writing, with some having trouble with Grade 6 mathematics.

EQAO’s tests measure student achievement in reading, writing and mathematics in relation to Ontario Curriculum expectations. This round of results comes from tests focused on Grade 3 and 6 reading, writing and mathematics abilities which occurred in the 2016-2017 school year.

(This year's results were taken over a three-year span, due in part to a teacher job action in 2015. The results thus show a longer trend than a single year would indicate.)

Topping the list of schools yet again is Arnprior's John XXIII Catholic School, whose Grade 3 and Grade 6 numbers were showing results in the mid to upper 90 percentages, meaning more than 90 per cent of their students met or exceeded the provincial standards.

Closer to home, St. Andrews Catholic School in Killaloe topped the charts as well, with reading, writing and math results in the 80s and 90s. The Grade 6 writing test showed 100 per cent of the students who took the tests scored above the provincial average.

Our Lady of Lourdes and Cathedral Catholic Schools in Pembroke also were well above average in their performances.

School board representatives have said they were pleased with how their students did in this latest round of standardized testing, while admitting there remains some work to be done to improve performance in math.

Elizabeth Burchat, RCCDSB Superintendent of Educational Services, said the board will be going over the results carefully to see what has been working and what needs to be improved upon.

“We take a bit of time to celebrate in the spirit of joy some of the results,” she said, especially in reading and writing skills where everyone is scoring exceptionally well, while resolving to keep working to sustain those results.

Burchat said the math scores show there is work to be done in strengthening that, and the board has a three-year plan to try to determine precisely where and why students are drifting in their numeracy skills, in order to have teachers concentrating on correcting it.

This is a strategy which worked well for boosting literacy skills, she said, and administration is now trying to determine if the same methods can be applied to math. One way is tapping the expertise of teachers working at schools already scoring high in math to see what they are doing, then get them to help their peers.

“Our understanding on how to teach math is growing,” Burchat said, “ This does take time to show, but I thoroughly believe we are teaching math better than we ever had been, and meeting the needs of all students.”

Pino Buffone, RCDSB education director, said the EQAO results reveal areas of strength as well as areas for growth. He said there will be a continued focus on math at the elementary and secondary levels.

Superintendent Gayle Bishop said EQAO data serves to either confirm or challenge their practices.

“When our students are not achieving as we expect, data compels us to challenge our thinking and our practices,” she said. “We will use this data to continue to have conversations with our school staff, students and parents about achievement and what can be done to improve student learning.”

Wendy Hewitt, RCDSB chairwoman, said EQAO results are just one tool used to collect and measure student progress every year.

“Report cards are essential to the evaluation of our students,” she said. “Together, over time, EQAO scores and report cards will help us better identify target areas of specific groupings of students so that we may adjust our instruction to be more precise in meeting the specific needs of students when they are completing individual work.”

“Ultimately, we want to support conversations among school staff as well as with students and parents about achievement and what can be done to improve student learning,” Hewitt said.

Réjean Sirois, CECCE Director of Education, is thrilled with the results, which saw Jeanne-Lajoie's Grade 3 and Grade 6 students score highly, well above provincial averages.

“I am very pleased to see that Centre-Est Catholic schools such as Centre scolaire catholique Jeanne-Lajoie have achieved such high scores, which are a testament to the quality education we offer, the leadership of school administrators, and the dedication of our teaching staff to supporting student success and the pursuit of excellence,” he said.

The CEPEO is redoubling its efforts to improve further, even as École élémentaire Publique l’Équinoxe scored very well.

"The results are excellent!" said Édith Dumont, director of education and secretary-treasurer. "But let us not forget that these are general results. Yes, the overwhelming majority of our students perform well, but we make it our duty to accompany each student in each school to realize their full potential. This is why we have developed student success teachers in numeracy, literacy, French language retrieval and the newcomer program in elementary schools."

Over all, Renfrew County students held their own in this latest round of standardized testing, in comparison with the provincial results. Data comparing the boards to the provincial averages are as follows.

Please note the French language elementary schools were evaluated together, and their province-wide results will be different as a result.

In Grade 3, the following percentage of students achieved test results at or above the provincial standard;

Reading: province-wide, 74 per cent; RCDSB students, 74 per cent; RCCDSB students, 82 per cent.

French language results, reading, province-wide, 83 per cent; CEPEO students, 84 per cent; CECCE students 88 per cent.

Writing: province-wide, 73 per cent. RCDSB students, 73 per cent; RCCDSB students, 87 per cent.

French language results, writing, province-wide, 78; CEPEO students, 82 per cent; CECCE students, 86 per cent.

Mathematics: province-wide, 62 per cent; RCDSB students, 65 per cent; RCCDSB students, 77 per cent.

French language results, math, province-wide, 76; CEPEO students, 80 per cent; CECCE students, 83 per cent.

In Grade 6, the results were:

Reading: province-wide, 81 per cent; RCDSB students, 81 per cent; RCCDSB students, 90 per cent.

French language results, reading, province-wide, 91; CEPEO students, 92 per cent; CECCE students, 94 per cent.

Writing: province-wide, 79 per cent; RCDSB students, 73 per cent; RCCDSB students, 90 per cent.

French language results, writing, province-wide, 84; CEPEO students, 88 per cent; CECCE students 89 per cent.

Mathematics: province-wide, 50 per cent; RCDSB students, 46 per cent; RCCDSB students, 62 per cent.

French language results, math, province-wide, 82; CEPEO students, 85 per cent; CECCE students 88 per cent.

Individual school results

The EQAO results for each Renfrew County school, listed by school board and alphabetically, breaks down as follows, numbers are in percentages of those at or above the provincial standard:

Renfrew County District School Board

A.J. Charbonneau PS, Arnprior

Grade 3 - reading 75, writing 74, math 63

Grade 6 - reading 57, writing 59, math 23

Admaston Public School, Renfrew

Grade 3 - reading 77, writing 80, math 77.

Grade 6 - reading 77, writing 80, math 50.

Beachburg Public School

Grade 3 - reading 65, writing 68, math 59

Grade 6 - reading 88, writing 76, math 39

Central Public School, Renfrew

Grade 3 - reading 62, writing 69, math 67

Grade 6 - reading 76, writing 63, math 43

Champlain Discovery Public School, Pembroke

Grade 3 - reading 72, writing 79, math 64

Grade 6 - reading 68, writing 69, math 38

Cobden District Public School

Grade 3 - reading 80, writing 89, math 66

Grade 6 - reading 90, writing 83, math 51

Eganville and District Public School

Grade 3 - reading 87, writing 82, math, 67

Grade 6 - reading 91, writing 91, math 49

Herman Street Public School, Petawawa

Grade 3 - reading 75, writing 77, math 75

Grade 6 - reading 83, writing 71, math 37

Highview Public School, Pembroke

Grade 3 - reading 69, writing 54, math 52

Grade 6 - reading 60, writing 45, math 31

Killaloe Public School, Killaloe

Grade 3 - reading 90, writing 80, math 80

Grade 6 - reading 96, writing 88, math 38

Mackenzie Community School - Elementary, Deep River

Grade 3 - reading 90, writing 87, math 85

Grade 6 - reading 85, writing 80, math 61

McNab Public School, Arnprior

Grade 3 - reading 75, writing 77, math 70

Grade 6 - reading 88, writing 90, math 73

Palmer Rapids Public School, Palmer Rapids

Grade 3 - reading 81, writing 77, math 50

Grade 6- reading 90, writing 84, math 61

Pine View Public School, Pembroke

Grade 3 - reading 64, writing 64, math 57

Grade 6 - reading 82, writing 70, math 60

Queen Elizabeth Public School, Renfrew

Grade 3 - reading 66, writing 87, math 59

Grade 6 - reading 82, writing 78, math 62

Rockwood Public School, Pembroke

Grade 3 - reading 81, writing 82, math 79

Grade 6 - reading 84, writing 75, math 45

Valour School, Elementary, Petawawa

Grade 3 - reading 66, writing 52, math 52

Grade 6 - reading 80, writing 65, math 39

 

Renfrew County Catholic District School Board

Cathedral Catholic School, Pembroke

Grade 3 - reading 73, writing 84, math 66

Grade 6 - reading 88, writing 90, math 61

George Vanier Catholic School, Combermere

Grade 3 - reading 67, writing 58, math 67

Grade 6 - reading 82, writing 100, math 45

Holy Name Catholic School, Pembroke

Grade 3 - reading 69, writing 64, math 60

Grade 6 - reading 79, writing 83, math 17

John XXIII Catholic School, Arnprior

Grade 3 - reading 94, writing 97, math 91

Grade 6 - reading 97, writing 99, math 93

Our Lady of Fatima Catholic School, Renfrew

Grade 3 - reading 87, writing 97, math 86

Grade 6 - reading 90, writing 91, math 56

Our Lady of Grace Catholic School, Westmeath

Grade 3 - reading 95, writing 90, math 80

Grade 6 - reading 100, writing 95, math 68

Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School, Pembroke

Grade 3 - reading 84, writing 89, math 73

Grade 6 - reading 91, writing 87, math 69

Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School, Petawawa

Grade 3 - reading 74, writing 82, math 73

Grade 6 - reading 87, writing 81, math 45

St. Andrews Catholic School, Killaloe

Grade 3 - reading 86, writing 95, math 81

Grade 6 - reading 95, writing 100, math 93

St. Anthony’s Catholic School, Chalk River

Grade 3 - reading 59, writing 80, math 66

Grade 6 - reading 93, writing 93, math 32

St. Casimir’s Catholic School, Round Lake Centre - The number of students participating in the assessment or responding to the Student Questionnaire is so small that the identification of individual student results might be possible; therefore, results are not reported.

St. Francis of Assisi School, Petawawa

Grade 3 - reading 77, writing 87, math 71

Grade 6 - reading 84, writing 82, math 33

St. James Catholic School, Eganville

Grade 3 - reading 77, writing 88, math 58

Grade 6 - reading 88, writing 82, math 52

St. John Bosco Catholic School, Barry’s Bay

Grade 3 - reading 67, writing 64, math 62

Grade 6 - reading 92, writing 83, math 65

St. Joseph Catholic School, Arnprior

Grade 3 – reading 88, writing 86, math 78

Grade 6 - reading 91, writing 90, math 66

St. Joseph’s Catholic School, Calabogie

Grade 3 - reading 85, writing 92, math 69

Grade 6 - The number of students participating in the assessment or responding to the Student Questionnaire is so small that the identification of individual student results might be possible; therefore, results are not reported.

St. Mary’s Catholic School, Deep River

Grade 3 - reading 96, writing 96, math 85

Grade 6 - reading 88, writing 95, math 71

St. Mary’s Catholic School, Wilno - The number of students participating in the assessment or responding to the Student Questionnaire is so small that the identification of individual student results might be possible; therefore, results are not reported.

St. Michael’s Catholic School, Douglas

Grade 3 - reading 75, writing 82, math 80

Grade 6 - reading 88, writing 94, math 55

Eastern Ontario French Language Public School Board (CEPEO)

École élémentaire Publique l’Équinoxe

Grade 3 - reading 69, writing 64, math 93

Grade 6 - reading 94, writing 88, math 94

East-Central Ontario French Language Catholic School Board (CECLF)

École cath. Jeanne-Lajoie, pavillon élémentaire

Grade 3 - reading 85, writing 91, math 78

Grade 6 - reading 94, writing 85, math 77

For detailed reports on the EQAO results of your school board and individual school, visit http://www.eqao.com, or contact your local school.

SUhler@postmedia.com