Division News

Division News

Grade 6 NSD students experience increased levels of academic achievement

Posted on October 13

Northland School Division No.61 (NSD) is pleased to report improvement in Provincial Achievement Test (PAT) results for grade 6 students. However, there is still more work to do to ensure that more grade 6 students achieve success with PAT’s. PAT results provide one measure of student achievement. They are used by schools, teachers and parents to monitor and improve student learning.

Grade 6 Overall PAT Results 2014-2015

  • English Language Arts (ELA): 8% increase compared to 2013-2014
  • Math: 9% increase compared to 2013-2014
  • Science: 9% increase compared to 2013-2014
  • Social Studies: 4 % increase compared to 2013-2014

In ELA and Math, five NSD schools reached or exceeded the provincial average for achieving the acceptable standard, four schools accomplished the same in Science and three schools in Social Studies. Donna Barrett, Superintendent of Schools, credits the focused efforts of staff, parents, students and school communities for contributing to success for grade 6 students.

“We are pleased to see improvement with our grade 6 students,” said Barrett. “This improvement would not be possible without the efforts of students, staff, parents, elders and community members. In addition to the dedication of our school communities, strategies to improve literacy practices and student attendance are paying off.”

Since the Literacy Initiative began in 2012, schools are working to increase the percentage of students reading at grade level. Since October 2013, students reading at grade level in grades 1-8 has increased by 19%. In 2014, NSD launched the Attendance Improvement Initiative ‘Every Day Counts’. Since the initiative began division-wide attendance has increased by 2%, two schools are over 90%, three schools are over 85% and 15 schools experienced improvement.

“When reviewing the results, some schools who are experiencing a steady rise in the number of students reading at grade level, performed better on the grade 6 PAT’s,” said Barrett. The same can be said for schools who have a high rate of student attendance.”

As pleased as NSD is with improvement in grade 6, there is concern with results for grade 9 students.

“We are working with students, parents, staff and community members to improve participation rates for grade 9 students,” said Barrett. “As a division, we work with school communities to highlight the importance of writing and preparing for Provincial Achievement Tests. We are working to increase engagement with grades 9’s by focussing on things like land-based learning and Career and Technology Studies (CTS).”

Student Learning Assessments

Two years ago, the Alberta Government announced that beginning September 2014, Provincial Achievement Tests would begin to be phased out and replaced with a new form of testing known as the Student Learning Assessments (SLAs). A pilot phase began last year with schools administering SLAs to grade 3 students. All grade 3 students at NSD participated in 2014 and are once again in 2015. For more information about SLAs click on the link below.


PAT Results 2014-2015