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2021 state assessment results released

The Delaware Department of Education today released statewide assessment results for the 2020-21 school year, cautioning that due to low participation rates the results do not allow for comparison to previous test administrations.


"The 2020-21 school year was different from any other since many of our students were learning remotely for part or all of the academic year. Although assessment opportunities were available to all students, we saw significantly fewer students take the assessment," Secretary of Education Susan Bunting said. "While direct comparisons with assessment data from previous years may not be appropriate because of this, the data provides an important temperature check that allows our schools to better track and address both short- and long-term learning needs."


Although the U.S. Department of Education waived student assessment requirements in the 2019-2020 academic year due to COVID-19 school building closures that spring, Delaware was required to administer all tests for the 2020-21 academic year. 


Statewide, participation was at 60 percent for the state's English language arts and mathematics assessments for grades 3-8 while about 71 percent of eligible students took the SAT, the state's high school federal accountability test. For the state's social studies and science exams, 49 percent of eligible students participated. The state also administers an alternative assessment for students with significant cognitive disabilities. The overall participation was 58 percent on the alt assessment.


For those students who did participate, 41 percent scored at the proficiency level on the 3-8 ELA test while 26 percent did so in mathematics. On the SAT, 49 percent scored at proficient on evidenced-based reading and writing with 28 percent doing so on the math portion of the test and 44 percent on the essay section. Proficiency on the science assessment was 24 percent and 30 percent on the social studies assessment. For the alt assessment, the proficiency rates were 26 percent for ELA, 21 percent for math and 13 percent for science. 


Families received their student reports in the mail last month, providing valuable information on their children's learning progress. Educators received the results a few weeks after the students tested.


"Educators and school-based staff have faced and risen to meet unprecedented challenges in the past year. The assessment results will be used to help all of us educators better understand the needs of our students so we can more effectively support them," Bunting said.


Find full results, including demographic and district/charter information, here.