Espe: Reading, math, and science proficiency continue to climb

The Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCA-III) are tests in reading, math and science taken annually to measure student performance in relation to the Minnesota Academic Standards. Students in grades 3-8, 10 take reading, grades 3-8, 11 take math, and grades 5, 8, 10 take science. Final 2017 data for Princeton Public Schools show approximately 64 percent of students are proficient in Reading, 61 percent are proficient in Math and 62 percent are proficient in Science. Final data for all Minnesota school districts were publicly released today and are available on the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) Report card at:

Our proficiency trends have increased steadily over the past five years:
•District reading from 55.0 percent in 2013 to 64.2 percent in 2017.
•District math from 54.1 percent in 2013 to .3 percent in 2017.
•District science from 59.9 percent in 2013 to 62.1 percent in 2017.
Some of the most impressive increases in proficiency by grade level are:
•Third grade reading from 62.6 percent in 2016 to 69.0 percent in 2017.
•Fifth grade reading from 69.7 percent in 2016 to 76.8 percent in 2017.
•Sixth grade reading from 63.4 percent in 2016 to 66.3 percent in 2017.
•Seventh grade reading from 59.9 percent in 2016 to 62.2 percent in 2017.
•Third grade math from 72.3 percent in 2016 to 77.0 percent in 2017
•Fifth grade math from 58.8 percent in 2016 to 60.2 percent in 2017.
•Eleventh grade math from 33.5 percent in 2016 to 50.0 percent in 2017.
•Students who receive free/reduced price lunch increased in reading from 51.9 percent in 2016 to 56.2 percent in 2017.
The Princeton Public Schools strategic plan has a goal of providing personalized instruction for every student and another goal of preparing 21st century students to be career and college ready. In order to achieve these goals, we are:
•Creating standards-based learning goals and progressions for each course and/or grade level.
•Creating, administering and analyzing common assessments to monitor student growth.
Our district has committed to quality professional development for our teachers and administrators, and this has contributed to our success. The strategic plan has aligned our goals from the individual teacher level to their department or grade level level to the school level to the district level. These cascading domains maximize student success.
Teachers and Administrators have worked very hard to meet goals, and we will continue to do so throughout the 2017-2018 school year. The MCAs are just one indicator we use to measure student performance. Teachers are looking for student growth every single day. This growth mindset has been an effort we have implemented over the past few years.
Individual student results will be sent home later this summer in late August. If you have questions about the results, please contact your school principal.
Whether you are a parent or a relative or a community person, please continue to support our school personnel as we continue to help students to improve their own achievement. It is a fact that creating a culture in which teams of teachers help one another get better is the secret to improving schools. Be proud that we have it happening in Princeton Public Schools.