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    Academic Performance Index Scores for LB Schools

    (October 24, 2003) -- provides a link to detailed Academic Performance Index (API) results for LB schools, released today by the CA Dept. of Education.

    The API is a numeric index ranging from 200 to 1000, with 800 the statewide "goal." After clicking on the link below, it's the figure in second column from the left ("2003 API Growth").

    As previous years, LB elementary schools showed generally higher scores than middle or high schools.

    However this year, the scores from nearly every LB high school, middle school and elementary school showed an improvement over last year's results. (A small charter high school, Pacific Learning Center, was an exception.) LB Poly didn't have a reportable score because (CA Dept. of Ed says) in at least one 2003 STAR test content area used in the API, it failed to test a significant proportion of students who were not exempt from testing in 2003.

    • High Schools: The highest API score was attained by LBUSD's CA Academy of Math & Science [magnet school] (909), followed by Lakewood (678), Wilson (676), Millikan (657) Savannah Academy (634), Jordan (543) and Cabrillo (517).

    • Middle Schools: The highest API results were posted by Rogers (797), Stanford (789), Bancroft (779) and Hughes (773) while Franklin (550) and Washington (564) scored lowest.

    • Elementary Schools: The highest scoring were Lowell (903), Gant (884), Naples (867), Fremont (854), Longfellow (829) and Twain (826) with Butler (635), Powell (653), McKinley (656) Lincoln (662), Lee (663) and Burcham (664) among the lowest.

    Here are 2003 API scores for every LB school, in detail: 2003 LB Academic Performance Index scores

    "These are significant gains for urban high schools especially," LBUSD spokesman Dick Van Der Laan told, adding that LBUSD made the strongest showing statewide among urban school districts (Garden Grove also fared well among this category.).

    The CA Dept. of Education says that statewide, 90% of CA's public schools improved their API scores.

    In the nearby Los Alamitos Unified School District, eight of its nine schools scored over 800...and scores at all nine schools went up. Los Al High scored 787. (Exception: a continuation school). In the Cypress district, seven of its ten elementary schools had scores above 800. Data for several high schools in the ABC Unified District (Cerritos, etc.) wasn't avaialble; CA Dept. of Ed's web site said these schools are "currently changing data. Their API is scheduled for release in December."

    The 2003 API Growth score reflects each school's performances on student assessments that are part of the CA Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) program plus results of the California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE), calculated based on tests given in spring 02 and spring 03 as part of the STAR program.

    A CA Dept. of Education press release notes, "This is the first year that the API growth results have the majority of the weight on tests specifically geared toward Californiaís high standards. Eighty percent of the API for elementary and middle schools rests on the California Standards Tests (CST); while almost 90 percent of the API for high schools rests on the standards tests and the CAHSEE."

    Specifically [caveat, educationspeak follows] "the API includes the CST English Language Arts, as well as the CST Mathematics results for grades 2-11, the CST Social Science results for grades 10-11, and the CAHSEE results. The remainder of the weight continues to be placed on the national, standardized norm-referenced California Achievement Test, Sixth Edition Survey (CAT/6) (replacing the SAT/9). By placing limited weight on the norm-referenced test, it is then possible to focus on testing to Californiaís high standards while maintaining the ability to benchmark our students against the rest of the nationís school children."

    The 2003 API Growth score can be compared to the 2002 API Base score, but not directly to last year's 2002 API Growth score because the API base score is recalculated to reflect changes in the 2003 API test. The CA Dept. of Education says comparison of the 2003 API Growth score to the 2002 API Base score is valid, but direct comparison to last year's API API score is not.

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