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PSSA scores climb for 9th straight year

This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.

The School District’s streak of consecutive years of rising state test scores has grown to nine, with preliminary results released Monday showing modest overall gains of 2-3 percent in reading and math on the PSSA exam, with gains at nearly every grade level.

Overall, 59 percent of students are now proficient in math and 52 percent in reading.

Officials are touting the improvements at the District’s first six Promise Academies, where proficiency rates increased by 10 points in math and six points in reading, far above the District average.

The news was not so good at Empowerment Schools, which in 2010 outpaced the District in test score gains and last fall implemented a new literacy curriculum and textbook series. Math scores at these chronically low-scoring schools climbed by just over 1 point and reading scores were essentially flat.

The District published a detailed summary of the trends in different grades and subjects and for different demographic groups. Other than 8th grade reading scores, which dropped four points, all other grades were trending up in both reading and math.

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