SBAC Scoring Increases

Last year, due to an increase in the number of participants in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC), the school’s overall score increased compared to prior years. 96percent of students signed up to take the test, five percent more than the previous year. Two years ago, enough juniors opted out of taking the SBAC to lower the school’s overall score, since every student who does not take the test gets a 0. The SBAC is an annual assessment used to score a school’s level of education and how it compares with other schools in California.

“We were very happy with the results, but hope to continue to do better this year and beat Westlake and Thousand Oaks,” Bennett Wutkee, Vice Principal of Instruction, said.

To increase the scores from the previous year, Wutkee made sure to stress the importance of the test to the teachers, who in turn carried the message to the juniors who took the test in May. Wutkee also sent voicemail and email reminders to students.

“Some of the math teachers had in-class practice tests for students to get used to the programming, which really helped,” Wutkee said.

English teacher Robin Lilly reminded students about the effect of the test on the whole school.

“A lot of students did not understand how it related to them personally,” Lilly said. “However, I made sure to emphasize that it affects us collectively and the perception of our school.”

Wutkee also credits the higher scores to students seeing the importance of the test, due to constant reminders by administration and teachers. Some students, such as Emily Adams, senior, stayed to complete the test even though most students were leaving.

“I wanted to do my best on the test, and didn’t care how long I took,” Adams said.

The administration plans to continue encouraging students to get high scores on the test this year, but is looking into different methods.

“We might give out popsicles or bagels to the students this year to congratulate them and to help them get through the test,” Wutkee said.

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