Although our students are not defined by one test on one day, the state of Colorado requires the ACT test of all high school students. Unlike several other standardized tests such as PARCC, students take the ACT seriously. It has been viewed as a marker in high school achievement, not to mention used as a criterion in college admissions.
Here is a look at the 2010 ACT scores compared with the 2015 ACT scores. The comparison is not exact, as there is a school that tested in 2010 with no results in 2015 (eDCSD) and a few schools that tested in 2015 that did not test in 2010 (Legend High School, SkyView Academy, and the STEM charter school).
Students at schools which were tested in both 2010 and 2015 represent 83.6% of 2015 scores that held steady or rose. Another 13.9% were not tested in 2010 and made a strong showing for 2015, including two charters that had scores above the district average. The remaining 2.4% of students whose scores declined represent our two alternative schools, who have strong leadership in place to help guide students through improvements.
There are other bright spots. For example, HOPE Online, one of DCSD's charters, caters to special populations of students that are low-income, English language learners, or may otherwise face challenges. HOPE kids want to succeed despite these. They have pulled their ACT scores up by 1.6, a greater jump than any other school. This is an excellent indicator for HOPE Online.
DCSD parents, teachers, and staff have all supported our students, who have worked very hard to effect these improvements. I am very proud of them!