Richardson ISD using testing data to help assess learning loss

The Richardson ISD board of trustees analyzed results from its recent Measures of Academic Progress assessment program to better understand how well students are performing. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
The Richardson ISD board of trustees analyzed results from its recent Measures of Academic Progress assessment program to better understand how well students are performing. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

The Richardson ISD board of trustees analyzed results from its recent Measures of Academic Progress assessment program to better understand how well students are performing. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

The Richardson ISD board of trustees analyzed results from its recent Measures of Academic Progress assessment program to better understand how well students are performing.

Collected through tests held in January, the data assesses students in grades kindergarten through 10 in three subjects: reading, mathematics and science.

Jacob Cortez, RISD executive director of accountability and continuous improvement, said in a presentation during the March 7 board meeting that the results are a good indicator of projected scores on the standardized State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness tests in the spring.

In both reading and math, MAP data showed the average score for RISD students remained in the “average” to “high average” range compared to historical trends.

Cortez said the district needs to be mindful of academic gaps continuing to exist across demographic groups in reading. For example in second grade, white students had an average test score of 191 while African American students had an average score of 173 out of a possible maximum score of 280. Cortez said the data shows a need to close the equity gaps in kindergarten through second grade to prevent them from widening over time.


In math, Cortez said the equity gaps remain fairly proportional between student groups at each grade level.

RISD officials said the testing data also helps teachers understand how students are progressing and allows them to adjust their educational plans.

When analyzing personal growth, the district found several grade levels had at or above 50% of students meet their projected growth measures in both English and math. Data for the district showed 50% of students reached goals in reading while 51% met goals in math.

Among individual schools, data showed Canyon Creek, Prairie Creek, Thurgood Marshall and Wallace elementary schools each had at least 50% of students meet their projected growth measures in every grade level in reading. O. Henry and Richardson Terrace elementary schools both had at least 50% of students meet their projected growth measures in every grade level in math, according to the data.

Cortez said he is concerned that the latest academic results still showed signs of learning loss mainly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Cortez said data estimates STAAR scores this spring will be lower in third grade math, third grade reading and fifth grade math compared with 2021 results.

In order to tackle this issue, Cortez said the district plans to provide ongoing professional development, support and resources to campuses. Evaluations are expected to be held over the summer to determine the effectiveness of programming tied to the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief fund. The programs aim to help districts address learning loss issues related to the pandemic.
By Jackson King
Jackson joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in January of 2022. He graduated in 2020 from Texas A&M with a degree in journalism. Jackson covers education, local government, business, development, real estate, transportation and nonprofits in the Richardson community. Prior to CI, he covered sports for the Wylie News, interned at Maroon Weekly and Insite Brazos Valley Magazine in College Station, Texas, and wrote freelance for the Dallas Morning News.