Seventy-four percent of all eighth-graders in the local school district met or exceeded standards, up from 63 percent in the 2008-2009 school year. While this score still ranks slightly below the state average of 79 percent, Anderson was pleased with the improvement within the school system.
“We’ve got some room to grow (but) we’re moving up,” she told board members at the meeting.
The Eighth Grade Writing Assessment is mandated by the state of Georgia and was last administered in January. It tests persuasive and expository writing, as students are asked to respond to a randomly assigned prompt. Each assessment is graded by two independent readers who assign scores in the areas of ideas, organization, style and convention.
In preparation for the writing assessment, middle schools emphasized writing across the curriculum. Students were given mock tests and provided commentary on their performance. Then instruction was adjusted to address the learning needs of students.