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Ossining Students Average In State English Test

OSSINING, N.Y. – Results from state standardized English and math tests showed that Ossining third through eighth graders performed about the same as the state average for English, and slightly lower than the state average for math.

For the English Language Arts (ELA) exam, 53.9 percent of Ossining grade 3-8 students met or exceeded the state proficiency standard, while 52.8 percent of grade 3-8 students across the state met or exceeded the standard.

For the math exam, 56.7 percent of Ossining grade 3-8 students met or exceeded the proficiency standard, while 63.3 percent of grade 3-8 students across the state met or exceeded the standard.

"I think that it's a benchmark, and certainly the intention of these state tests is to show where a school can improve their curriculum," said Ossining Town Supervisor Catherine Borgia, who has two children going into the eighth and 11th grades. "I have to say both my children have received an excellent education in all subjects. They're very fortunate to have a great learning atmosphere and excellent teachers."

Borgia noted that the Ossining school district has many students who speak English as a second language, and standardized tests which are written in English may be a challenge for those students.

Ossining Board of Education President Bill Kress said he does not think state standardized tests are a good measure of the success of students.

"I'm proud of the way we continue to educate our students and I don't place a lot of importance on these tests," he said. "It's a snapshot of one day and I'm just not sure it's indicative of the capabilities of our students."

Ossining schools Superintendent Phyllis Glassman did not return several calls asking her to comment on the test results.

Last year, the state raised its proficiency standard scores to "better reflect the level of achievement needed to indicate that a student is on track to achieve college-ready scores on future state exams," state Education Department officials said in a press release.

"While the majority of students statewide met or exceeded the state's proficiency standards in both math and English Language Arts, overall performance remains low and the gaps in achievement persist," the release said.

Countywide, 62.9 percent of grade 3-8 students met or exceeded proficiency standards for English Language Arts, and 70.1 percent met or exceeded proficiency standards for math.

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