St. Johns County students perform well on 2022 assessments

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Students across the state demonstrated performance gains in the final year of the Florida Standards Assessment, with the St. Johns County School District leading the way.

Commissioner of Education Manny Diaz Jr. announced the results Thursday, June 30.

“Every single Florida teacher, student and parent should be proud of the progress we’ve made over the last year,” he said. “As a department, we’re looking forward to building on this great work through the many learning initiatives and improvements on the horizon.”

Any of that progress going forward will be measured differently, as legislation signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in March replaces the assessments with progress monitoring.

Educators have long lamented the volume of time devoted to preparing for the assessments, time subtracted from classroom instruction.

“Florida’s education focus should be students’ growth and how we restore the conversation between parents and teachers in support of students’ growth,” DeSantis said in 2021 in proposing the change. “In this final step to eradicate Common Core from our assessments, our administration is implementing the lessons learned from progress monitoring both during the state’s recovery and from our districts and schools that were already showing how we can better support students reaching their own unique growth goals.”

This year, achievement gaps between African-American and White students narrowed on all social studies and science assessments.

African-American students’ performance increased by 8% in civics, 4% in U.S. history, 3% in fifth-grade science, 2% in eighth-grade science and 1% in biology 1.

Hispanic students’ performance increased by 6% in civics, 3% in U.S. history and 3% in fifth-grade science.

Overall, compared with 2021 results, Florida students’ performance increased by 5% in the civics end-of-course exam, 2% in the U.S. history end-of-course exam and 1% in fifth-grade science. Performance remained unchanged for eighth-grade science and decreased by 1% in the biology 1 end-of-course exam.

Here are the results for the St. Johns County School District:

  • English Language Arts (grades 3-10): 73% received a passing score. Unchanged from 2021. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.
  • Mathematics (grades 3-8): 78% received a passing score, a 1% increase from 2021. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.
  • Algebra 1 (grades 6-12): 77% received a passing score, 23% higher than the state average. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.
  • Algebra 1 end-of-course exam (grade 12 and lower): 75% received a passing score, a 4% increase from 2021. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.
  • Geometry (grades 6-12): 77% received a passing score, 27% higher than the state average. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.
  • Science (grade 5): 69% received a passing score, 1% lower than in 2021. Only Nassau County scored higher, with 70%.
  • Science and biology 1 end-of-course exam (grade 8): 72% received a passing score, 2% higher than in 2021. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.
  • Biology 1 end-of-course exam: 84% received a passing score, 1% lower than in 2021. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.
  • Civics end-of-course exam: 90% received a passing score, 2% higher than in 2021. Only Lafayette County scored higher, with 96%.
  • S. history end-of-course exam: 85% received a passing score. Unchanged from 2021. This is the highest percentage among all Florida school districts.

Individual schools

For the spring Algebra 1 assessment, 100% of students at Landrum Middle School, Pine Island Academy and Freedom Crossing Academy received a passing grade. At Landrum, 79% achieved the highest level — equivalent to an A in traditional grading. At Pine Island, 75% achieved the highest level.

At Nease High School, 72% received a passing score. At Ponte Vedra High School, it was 84%. Valley Ridge Academy and Palm Valley Academy both had 98%.

For the spring geometry assessment, 100% of students at a dozen schools received a passing score. They were: Landrum Middle School, Valley Ridge Academy, Freedom Crossing Academy, Palm Valley Academy, Sebastian Middle School, Switzerland Point Middle School, Mill Creek Academy, Gamble Rogers Middle School, Patriot Oaks Academy, Liberty Pines Academy, Pacetti Bay Middle School and Fruit Cove Middle School.

As a new school, Pine Island Academy did not have any data for this year.

Once again, Landrum led the way, with 95% achieving the highest level. Freedom Crossing Academy was second with 92%.

At both Nease and Ponte Vedra high schools, 85% received a passing score.

For the spring biology 1 end-of-course exam, 100% of students at three schools received a passing score. There were: Sebastian, Switzerland Point and Gamble Rogers middle schools.

At Nease High School, 91% received a passing score. At Ponte Vedra High School, it was 92%.

For the spring civics end-of-course exam, 93% of students at Landrum Middle School received a passing grade. At Valley Ridge Academy, it was 94%. Palm Valley Academy: 91%. Pine Island Academy: 93%.

For the spring U.S. history end-of-course assessment, 90% of students at Nease High School received a passing score. At Ponte Vedra High School, it was 94%. In this category, PVHS led the county with 48% achieving the highest level.

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