Common Core standards test shows mixed results

Current DPMHS seniors scored higher in the Enlgish than they did in math

Jessica Salguero and Cristina Jercan

Common Core results for California’s trial year have finally been shared with students and families. Overall, the school scored above average in English and be- low average in math compared to other Los Angeles United School District(LAUSD) schools.

Infographic by Ilana Gale

“In terms of in comparison to the district as a whole, our scores for math, some of our scores weren’t as high as the scores in LAUSD as a whole but in English we did better in every area than LA Unified,” Principal Deb Smith said.

Two years ago, students from LAUSD were the trial run for a new educational standard system that would revolutionize the minds of children today. Common Core standards are used to ensure that students are prepared for the careers and college programs available.

“The theory is that if a student moves from Los Angeles to let’s say Knoxville, Tennessee, and they’re in the same grade, same year, same month, theory says they should be able to go to Knoxville and know right where they are in the curriculum because all these states have agreed that these are the standards,” Smith said.

Although Common Core State Stan- dards are a way for all students to be graded upon the same system, it has been a hassle for students and teachers to become accustomed to it, according to Smith. Students are confused with the new standards shifting their way of thinking. For instance in math, students have been accustomed

to simply calculating mathematical problems throughout the years but are now being asked to tackle word based problems instead.

“Unfortunately, they’re now being tested but they’ve spent 10 years in a dif- ferent educational system,” Smith said.

The main purpose for Common Core is to tap into the student’s analytical, problem-solving, and critical thinking skills.

This is a way for students to access a new level of understanding the material provided by Common Core. It allows for them to try different kinds of angles to tackle a problem either in mathematics or English language-arts.

During last year’s trial run, Daniel Pearl Magnet High School (DPMHS) juniors were the only grade level tested. Sixty-five percent of the students scored in the proficient or advanced category in English. The school’s math scores revealed that 19% of juniors were either at a proficient or advanced level.

“I feel like they could have put more emphasis on the students interacting with the problem instead of just memorizing,” sophomore Mabel Aceves said.

DPMHS students did better in the English department when compared to the state results which showed only 56% of students were classified as proficient or advanced. However, the math scores were extremely low when compared with the state’s 29% proficiency and advanced rates.

“I was pleasantly surprised by my test scores because I didn’t think I did well,” senior Sarah Karabadjakian said.