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ODE releases new K-12 stats

The Oregon Department of Education released its 2012-13 Oregon Statewide Report Card last week.

The annual report offers trends, data, demographics and progress on goals for the K-12 public education system in the state. Contents include how many students meet state assessment standards and graduation and drop out rates as well as student enrollment figures and teaching staff statistics.

According to the report, the percent of high schoolers who met or exceeded the state assessment standards was 85 percent last year in reading, up 1 percentage point from the previous year, and it was 63 percent in math, down 3 percentage points from the previous year.

The four-year graduation rate for Oregon students who entered high school in 2007-08 was 68 percent, the same as for students entering the following year. About 75 percent of the 2008-09 cohort earned a regular, modified, extended or adult high school diploma.

According to the most recent data listed in the report, the dropout rate for the state increased nominally from 3.3 percent of students in 2010-11 to 3.4 percent 2011-12, and the number gradually has dropped from 5.2 percent in 2000-01.

The total number of students in the state dropped by 350 from 2008-09 to last school year, from 564,064 to 563,714 and was up last year over 2011-12, when there were 560,946 students. From 2011-12 to 2012-13, the number of Hispanic, Asian students and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander students increased, and the number of Black, white and American Indian/Alaska Native students went down.

The number of teachers in full-time positions decreased from about 26,874 in 2011-12 to about 26,443 in 2012-13. The overall full-time staff decreased 1.6 percent from about 60,909 to 59,908, and the library and media jobs saw the biggest dip from 900 to 825 jobs.

Produced since 1992, the Oregon Statewide Report Card is required by law to show public schools’ progress toward the goals of the Oregon Educational Act for the 21st Century, which revised common curriculum goals, diploma requirements, academic content standards and other aspects of the education system.

To view the report card, visit www.ode.state.or.us/search/page/?id=1821.

LOHS students helping families

The Lake Oswego High School DECA chapter is holding a whiteout Friday at a home basketball game to raise dollars for Northwest Children’s Outreach. The game pits the LOHS boys against Newberg High School.

Kicking off with the game at 7:30 p.m., the students from DECA, a learning-through-business group, will be collecting donations for the organization, which provides families in need with basic items such as shampoo, shoes and diapers. Students also will be supporting the organization by selling white Northwest Children’s Outreach T-shirts for $5. People can donate at the game at LOHS, 2501 Country Club Road, or by swinging by the school business office during business hours.

PISA results released

United States students are improving slightly in math but on average still rank well below most of the other top economic powers in the world, test scores show.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, an international organization aimed at improving the economics and social-well being of people across the globe, on Tuesday released the 2012 results from the Programme for International Student Assessment. The assessment offers data on the knowledge and skills of 15-year-old students in 65 participating economic groupings (some countries were represented by multiple economies).

PISA is a two-hour, paper test measuring students’ skills in math, reading, science and problem solving. Participants from the United States in the test included Connecticut and Massachusetts but not Oregon, and the U.S. ranks 26th in math, 17th in reading and 21st in science. The U.S. spends more per student than most countries at $115,000 per student over his or her academic career, according to OECD. The Shanghai, China group was ranked first in PISA. The lowest-scoring PISA economies were in Brazil.

For more information, visit www.oecd.org/pisa/keyfindings/pisa-2012-results.htm.

Learning about teachers

The Chalkboard Project recently kicked off its Teacher Contract Database.

Representatives of the Chalkboard Project — an initiative of Foundations for a Better Oregon that’s intended to improve Oregon public schools — have created an online database that shows information on school districts from Oregon School Boards Association. Data includes the number of teachers and teacher contract days, in-service days, holidays and personal leave days as well as average salary and tuition reimbursement.

To view the database, visit oregonteachercontracts.org.

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