NASELLE - This year's Naselle-Grays River Valley High School sophomore class recently completed the state-mandated WASL exam, just as all of the other sophomores in the state. And, just as the state results showed, the NHS sophomores followed essentially the same pattern. That pattern was that sophomores essentially did well in reading and writing but not very well in the mathematics.

Superintendent of Schools Alan Bennett said, "From the individual results the Naselle-Grays River School Valley District received, results seem to be positive."

He noted how several students who struggled on the WASL during the 7th grade, passed at least two sections this spring and in many cases, all three sections. Many of these students benefited from the high school's Learning Assistance Program which was offered during 7th period. And out of 25 high school students taking the reading and writing portion of the test, 22 passed the reading portion and 21 passed the writing portion. But of the 27 students completing the math portion (four freshman took the test), only 14 of the 27 passed.

"This is an area of concern to the district and is the focus of the new summer school opportunities we are offering," said Bennett. "Students who do not pass part of the WASL have an opportunity for four free re-takes beginning this August."

Last year the district added a third year of high school math to the graduation requirements, which should help the math scores improve over time. Bennett said he feels the state minimum of only two years of high school math is inadequate preparation for the WASL for many of our students. The school board approved new math instructional materials selected by staff to address the state's Essential Learnings in the June 21, board meeting.

Bennett also provided some other facts regarding the WASL which are as follows:

• 23 tenth grade students and two ninth grade students completed the reading and writing sections of the WASL.

• 20 of 23 tenth graders met or exceeded the standard on the reading section of the WASL while both 9th grade students met the reading standard; thus, 22 out of 25 high school students met the standard on the reading section of the WASL.

• 19 of 23 tenth graders met the standard on the writing section of the WASL - two of these students just missed the standard; both 9th grade students met the standard; 21 out of 25 high school students met or exceed the writing standard on the WASL.

• 27 ninth and tenth grade students completed the mathematics section of the WASL; of those who completed the math section of the WASL, 23 were 10th graders and 4 were 9th graders

• 11 out of 23 tenth grade students met or exceeded the standard on the math section of the WASL while 3 out of 4 ninth grade students met the math standard; in all, 14 of 27 high school students met the standard on the math section of the WASL.

• Of those who did not meet the standard on the math section, eight came very close (six were classified as "near misses" and two others were also very close).

• Science section results will not be available until August

• Naselle High School is choosing to target math during a summer school program which will be offered between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on July 10 through Aug. 4 for 10th grade students who did not pass one or more sections of the WASL.

• Summer school can be flexibly scheduled (within reason) to accommodate work schedules and will be taught by a certified teacher who will focus primarily on improving algebra and geometry skills.

• Students who missed the standard on any section of the WASL are strongly encouraged to take advantage of summer school and to retake the WASL in August.

• Students who missed the standard on any section of the WASL must only retake the section(s) they did not pass; the first of four free retake opportunities is during Aug. 7 through 10; student can take both reading sections beginning at 8:30 am on Aug. 7, both math sections beginning at 8:30 a.m. on Aug. 8, writing section 1 on Aug. 9, and writing section 2 on Aug. 10 (both beginning at 8:30 a.m.)

• Students who fail to take advantage of the summer retake opportunity will lose one of their four free retake opportunities

• Students who intend to retake any section of the WASL - particularly the math section - are urged to attend summer school whenever available even if it is not every day.

• Student who intend to retake any section(s) of the WASL in August must register for the WASL by 5 p.m. on July 9 at www.k12.wa.us/waslregistration or by calling 866-400-WASL (9275). Student will need their state student ID number which is printed on the front of their score report.

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