Outcome 2 – Academics

Alaska Native students meet reading standards at the end of third grade

Indicator: The percentage of Alaska Native students whose reading skills meet standards on the Alaska Measures of Progress (AMP).*

Alaska assesses students’ progress in spring of each school year. Third grade is the first year students participate in this process. ARISE has selected this outcome and indicator because there is a strong connection between third-grade reading proficiency and high school graduation. A national study, “Double Jeopardy,” published by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, has shown that students who leave third grade unable to read at grade level are four times less likely to graduate from high school. If students’ lives are further complicated by challenging factors, such as bullying, illness, or issues at home, they face even greater odds.

In 2012, the State of Alaska revised the academic standards for English/Language Arts (ELA) and for mathematics. Spring of 2015 was the first year a new statewide student proficiency assessment called Alaska Measures of Progress (AMP) was administered to test against the revised standards. AMP scores reported are in four levels.

Scores in Levels 3 and 4 signify the student is meeting the standards and scores in Levels 1 and 2 indicate partially meeting standards. The AMP replaces the statewide proficiency tests used from 2005-2014, called Standards Based Assessment (SBA), which provided the data reported in the 2014 ARISE baseline report. The SBA data used in the 2014 report and the new AMP data from the 2014-2015 school year, which is highlighted below, aren’t comparable. “Apples to apples” comparison is not possible between the numbers, it’s more like apples to zebras. would normally take three years of AMP data to have a new trend line. However, the State of Alaska has decided to discontinue the AMP after the 2015-2016 school year. This change from the SBA to AMP, and to the assessment that comes next, affects ARISE outcome #2 and outcome #3, indicator A.

* The State of Alaska replaced the Standards Based Assessment (SBA) used from 2005-2014 with a new test called Alaska Measures of progress (AMP). The AMP test was first administered during the 2014-2015 school year. The data from 2013-2014 (ARISE baseline report year) and 2014-2015 (current report) is not comparable.

Photo courtesy of CITC

Outcome 2 Indicator

The percentage of Alaska Native students whose reading skills meet standards on the Alaska Measures of Progress (AMP)

Of Alaska Native third grade students who took the Alaska Measures of Progress (AMP) in April of 2015, 31.4 percent earned scores rating their reading skills as “meeting standards.” Of all other (non-Native) students, 42.2 percent were rated as “meeting standards.” This means they read, and understand what they read, appropriate to their grade level. “Meeting standards” is scoring level 3 or 4 on a 4-tier ranking scale.