Test scores show North Shore Nassau schools perform better than county average

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Nassau County test scores show that students in grades 3 to 8 performed slightly better in math and English Language Arts this year than in 2018. North Shore school districts generally recorded higher scores than the county average in both subject tests.

In math, 63 percent of students, or 32,587 students, in the county scored proficient in their grade level for math, compared with 60 percent, or 29,783, of students in 2018.

Some 59 percent of county students, or 33,145 students, scored proficient in ELA testing in 2019, a 1 percentage point increase from 2018, when 31,344 scored at a proficient level.

On the North Shore, Port Washington, Great Neck, Manhasset, Herricks, East Williston, New Hyde Park-Garden City Park and Roslyn recorded higher scores than the county average in both subject tests.

However, Sewanhaka and Mineola school districts scored lower than the county in both math and ELA.

Students in the Sewanhaka and Mineola school districts had the lowest scores on the North Shore in ELA with 54 percent of students scoring at a proficient level. The Herricks school district had 81 percent of students score proficient in ELA, the highest of the North Shore schools.

The East Williston school district had the highest proficiency rate in math among the North Shore school districts with 87 percent of students scoring at a proficient level. Sewanhaka  had the lowest math scores with 47 percent of students scoring proficient.

Some 81 percent of students in the Herricks school district scored proficient in math, and neighboring Mineola students recorded a proficiency score of 60 percent in the subject.

The Mineola school district also saw the highest rise in test scores from 2018 to 2019, going up 5 percentage points in ELA and up 4 percentage points  in math.

The East Williston school district had a proficiency score of 80 percent in ELA.

In the Port Washington school district, 63 percent of students score proficient in ELA and 71 percent in math.

The Manhasset school district recorded 78 percent of students ranked at a proficient level in ELA and 82 percent in math.

The Great Neck schools had a proficiency score of 80 percent for ELA and 81 percent for math.

The New Hyde Park-Garden City Park Union Free School District recorded 72 percent of students at a proficient level in ELA and 80 percent in math.

In Roslyn, 74 percent of students scored proficient in ELA and 79 percent in math.

According to state Education Department data accumulated by Newsday, the opt-out rate for the English Language Arts and math exams across Long Island’s school districts was 45 percent. The state also reported the overall state average of eligible students in grades 3 to 8 declining to take the test dropped 2 percentage points to 16 percent for spring exams.

“I know the Board of Regents and the State Education Department will continue their work to promote educational equity and ensure that all students succeed and thrive in school no matter who they are, where they live, where they go to school, or where they come from,” state Education Department Commissioner MaryEllen Elia said in a statement.

The news release was Elia’s final as education commissioner.

The North Shore in general has lower opt-out rates than average on Long Island, and the Herricks school district has the North Shore’s lowest rate, with only 10.8 percent of students opting out of the ELA exam and 10.8 percent for the math exams.

Superintendent Fino Celano did not respond to requests for comment.

The Great Neck Public Schools had one of the lowest opt-out rate rates for the ELA tests on Long Island, with only 14.4 percent of students declining to take the ELA exam and 16.6 percent declining to take the math exam.

This is a drop from last year, when 16.7 percent refused to take the ELA exams, according to Newsday.

Manhasset saw an increase from 19.3 percent in 2018 to 21.2 percent of third-graders through eighth-graders opting out of the ELA. For the math exam, 18.4 percent of Manhasset students opted out.

In the Roslyn school district, 26.5 percent of students opted out of the ELA exam along with 21.8 percent for the math exam.

Port Washington saw about 25.8 percent of eligible students opt out of the ELA exams this year and 25.1 percent opted out of the math exams.

The East Williston school district saw about 16.6 percent of students opt out of the ELA and 16.5 percent opted out of the math exam.

Superintendent Elaine Kanas did not respond to requests for comment.

Sewanhaka Central High School District saw some of the highest opt-out rates for North Shore schools with a 38.5 percent opt-out rate for the ELA test and 43.7 percent for math.

Superintendent James Grossane did not respond to requests for comment.

In 2018, 37 percent of students opted out.

Floral Park-Bellerose saw an opt-out rate of 29 percent for the ELA exam and 29.9 percent for math.

The district’s new superintendent, Kathleen Sottile, begins her term in September and said she preferred not to comment on scores and opt-outs during the former superintendent’s tenure.

Mineola saw an opt-out rate of 19.5 percent for the ELA test and 18.8 percent for math.

Superintendent Michael Nagler did not respond to requests for comment.

New Hyde Park-Garden City Park, one of the five elementary districts that feed into the Sewanhaka district, had a 24.2 percent opt-out rate this year for grades 3 to 6, according to Education Department data.

Superintendent Jennifer Morrison did not respond to requests for comment.

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