EOC reports show state’s students lagging

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The South Carolina Education Oversight Committee (EOC) annual report shows that on measures of reading proficiency, on-time graduation, workforce readiness, and schools rated At Risk, South Carolina and its students are still lagging behind.

EOC Chairman Neil C. Robinson, Jr., presented the report on South Carolina’s progress and rankings on national measures. He pointed to the incremental progress students and schools are making but stated that the path forward needs to look different than it does today if we are to see incremental progress.

“We can’t continue to operate our schools the same way and expect different results. Innovation and transformation need to occur at the system level all the way down to the classroom level,” stated Robinson.

The 2020 Vision, established by the EOC in 2009, states that “by the year 2020, all students in South Carolina will graduate with the knowledge and skills necessary to compete successfully in the global economy, participate in a democratic society, and contribute positively as members of families and communities.” Progress toward the 2020 Vision is measured using four key education indicators: student reading proficiency, on-time graduation rates, workforce readiness of high school graduates, and schools rated At Risk.

The 2020 Vision targets 95 percent of students scoring on grade level at grades 3 and 8 on Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) Reading and 95 percent scoring Basic and above on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) at grades 4 and 8. Also:

· On the 2011 NAEP reading assessment, only 61 percent of SC 4th graders scored Basic and Above.

· Only 72 percent of SC 8th graders scored Basic and Above in 2011.

· 2012 PASS results show only 80 percent of 3rd graders and 70 percent of 8th graders reading on grade level.