IBJNews

Private schools with vouchers saw slight drop in test scores

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Private Indiana schools that accepted students from low- to middle-income families using state-funded vouchers last year experienced a drop in their passing rates on the state's ISTEP test this year, a newspaper's analysis of test scores shows.

The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne analyzed the test scores of 189 private schools with voucher students that administered the statewide test and used 2011 data for comparison. The newspaper reported Monday that its analysis showed those schools' passing rates for both math and English fell to 85 percent this year, down from 86 percent the year before.

At the same time, the state's public schools' scores rose slightly, with about 71 percent of students passing both the English and math portions of the test this year, up from about 70 percent last year. Those scores mark an 8-percent gain since the 2008-09 school year.

In 2011, Indiana lawmakers approved the nation's broadest voucher program for low-to-moderate income families. The program, which nearly 4,000 students took advantage of in the 2011-12 school year, allows parents to send their children to private schools using state funding.

School Choice Indiana executive director Lindsey Brown said the group, which supports the voucher law, "fully expected" that some private schools taking on new students would see slight drops in their scores.

"When a school takes on a large number of new students, that's certainly going to impact its scores," she said.

Brown said other choice programs nationwide have shown an initial negative impact before test results grow again.

The Indiana Department of Education has not yet run an aggregate calculation showing how many voucher students passed the test.

But Brown said voucher schools overall performed better than public schools. Specifically, she said 38 percent of voucher schools — or 86 schools — reached the 90-percent pass rate in both subjects, which the state Department of Education set as a goal for every school.

Still, some drops in passing rates at individual private schools were quite large.

For instance, the Ambassador Christian Academy in Gary accepted 110 voucher students at the beginning of the school year. In 2011, 78 percent of the academy's students passed both the math and English portions of the test. That rate dropped to 57 percent this year.

At Blackhawk Christian Jr.-Sr. High in Fort Wayne, 91 percent of students pass the math and English portions last year compared with 83 percent this year. The school's lead administrator, Bill Hartman, said he wasn't shocked at all to see an overall statewide reduction for voucher schools.

"I think there is no question as you broaden the student population your test scores are not going to be as high," he said. "The more you pull the public into the private we will see that."

But he cautioned against blaming the influx of voucher students, saying the majority of Blackhawk's voucher students were in elementary grades.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Incomplete Story
    This should not have been published without complete information. The headline tries to imply a correlation between vouchers and test scores without substantiating with details. If most of the kids with vouchers went into elementary, and the scores are for high school juniors and seniors, there's an obvious disconnect.

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Good Day I am Mr (Victoria Wright) from United state of America, i stayed in NEW YORK, and i have a broke up business, until i found this company email who help me to gain a loan for business,, and now i want to used this short medium to congratulate the below company for the fast and safe money they loan to me without any form of collateral, i loan 500,000USD from the company to save my business and lots more, i saw their mail on the internet, everyone always give testimony for what they did, so i quickly contacted them and they all did everything for me without stress and my money was sent to my account just 3 days later, i was surprise and i feel so glad, now i have a standard business control agent who help me, now i will advice those who need urgent loan to contact him at the bellow email:zenithfirm12@gmail.com

  2. NOTICE:This is to inform the general public that Vampires are real. My name is James Franklyn.,am an agent of vampire,am here to introduce our new world trend to you,a world of vampire where life get easier,we have made so many persons vampires and have turned them rich,you will be assured long life and prosperity,you shall be made to be very sensitive to mental alertness,stronger and also very fast,you will not be restricted to walking at night only even at the very middle of broad day light you will be made to walk.In case you are wildly oppressed by some unscrupulous persons we can still help you fight them.Your protection is assured immediately you join.Just contact the bellow email if you are interested we are here to attend to you anytime you want us. Contact the bellow email for more details. Email:vampirescreed@hotmail.com Sincerely: James Franklyn.

  3. Bravo! Someone else that is willing to speak the truth! Bravo!_____NBCSN is available in almost 2 MILLION more homes than just a few years ago, but Indycar STILL gets less total viewers than it did just a few years ago when NBC took over Versus. Attendance and ratings cratered with the end of season races (just when the title battle got "interesting" HAH!__________And now...new race in Basilia, where Miles celebrated the "rich history" of Indycar racing there. Rich history? What, 7 events in the 100 years of AOW? Yep, some history. Well, at least its an oval. It's not??? Are you kidding me??? Gosh darn road racin furriners.

  4. PURITY RAY LOAN OFFER........ Have you been denied by your banks,or are you in need of of an urgent loan to pay of your bills we are capable of giving loans @ cheaper rate to interested individuals, student, companies and members of the public in need of finance to settle bills, we do offer considerable loans which you can count on. For more information on our various types of loan,then you will have to contact PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM, to help you achieve your desire LOAN APPLICATION FORM TO BE FILLED BORROWERS INFORMATION * Full name:………………………. * SEX * ……………………………. * Country………………………….. * State:……………………………. * Land:…………………………….. * Occupation:…………………….. * phone number:…………………. * Telephone: ………………………….. * Age:………………………………. * Amount needed as loan:……… * Loan Duration:………………….. * Propose of Loan:……………….. * Annual revenue:………………… * Monthly Income:……………….. * Guarantee:………………………. * Payment: monthly or annually Email.....purityrayloanfirm@gmail.com Thank you and God bless Mr Purity Ray PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM we tend to serve you better

  5. Problem: most of the people responding to this article don't know about this service AT ALL! Why? Lack of awareness. This isn't IndyGo. This is CIRTA: might as well be the mattress company because they are asleep at the wheel - something like 3 directors over the last year? Playing with federal grant money is great! This "region" wants commuter rail service, has spent MILLIONS on Transportation studies yet can't even support a commuter bus line? This is largely for suburban riders to get to downtown - not for "service people to work in our hotels and restaurants" ! Get your head out of your backside!! These are professionals, students etc. that don't want to fight traffic, save some money on parking, gas, stress.... if CIRTA would put their federal money into widely promoting the sevive to Greenwood, Fishers & Carmel instead of finding directors and studies - this would be a successful service. Our family uses(d) it daily for the last several years - but the recent uncertainty & now unreliability due to cuts from Carmel has been a problem. Now, costs us an additional $350/month for gas & parking ( $4200/year) plus vehicle wear, service, environmental impact ... YES - this REGION needs this this type of service in order to keep growing and getting the people it needs to fill skilled positions in downtown Indianapolis. Think outside of your own car !!!

ADVERTISEMENT