Philadelphia public school students improve PSSA scores

    For the first time, more than half of Philadelphia public school students are proficient or better at reading and math.

    For the first time, more than half of Philadelphia public school students are proficient or better at reading and math. That’s according to preliminary results from this year’s Pennsylvania System of School Assessment exam.

    Math scores are up 4.4% from last year, and reading scores are up 3%. The results marks eight years of consistent improvement in school testing in the city, but they still leave nearly half of students at basic skill levels or below.

    Elliot Weinbaum is Assistant Professor of Education at the University of Pennsylvania and Senior Researcher at the Consortium for Policy Research in Education.

    Weinbaum:
    Having only half of your students performing at a proficient level is, probably to all stakeholders involved, unacceptable.

    Still, Weinbaum says few districts can boast even modest positive gains over such a long period of time.

    Even with the improvement, Philadelphia Schools are not on track to meet proficiency by 2014 as required by the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.