August 22, 2023
For Immediate Release
Announcements and Press Releases
Literacy gains highlight promising outcomes for City Schools on 2023 Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program assessments
In 2023, Baltimore City Public Schools (City Schools) students reached achievement levels in English Language Arts (ELA or literacy) on the Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP) that exceeded pre-pandemic outcomes while demonstrating growth in math and science.
The district’s pre-pandemic and recovery investments, mainly through the Blueprint for Success, have fueled English Language Arts results that are the highest in a decade, continuing a trajectory of growth dating back to the 2015-16 school year.
The district’s growth in ELA aligns with similar gains at the state level - our grade 3-8 increase of 4.5 percentage points is the fifth highest in Maryland compared to SY2021-22.
Meanwhile, City Schools produced promising district-wide growth in math, a challenging subject area for school systems nationwide following the pandemic. The district’s growth trend mirrored the performance of Maryland students overall. Student performance trends in science locally also aligned with statewide outcomes.
“Even with last year’s disappointing results, we strongly believed we had made the right investments in teachers and school leaders, instructional strategies, programs, and most importantly, our young people to regain our pre-pandemic momentum. These results only reinforce that belief,” said Sonja Brookins Santelises. “We are committed to continuing work that accelerates our growth curve. We have the right teachers, school leaders, and tools necessary to take those steps.”
English Language Arts highlights – positive growth continues
- Our results in this area have increased for five consecutive testing administrations.
- Proficiency in SY15-16 was 14.1 percentage points. Today, proficiency is 26 percentage points (12 percentage points growth).
- A 3.6-percentage point increase from last school year.
Math highlights – promising upticks on a longer journey
- We have two consecutive years of growth following the pandemic. All Math proficiency increased 1.8 percentage points over last year’s results.
- Our growth was slightly less than the state - 2.5 percentage points state to 1.8 percentage points for us.
- Our student performance and trends for both grades (grade 5 and grade 8) largely align with the state.
- Both City Schools and the state increased by 3-percentage points in grade 5.
- City Schools and the state both decreased in grade 8.
We laid the foundation for growth today.
- Investing in our teachers and leaders
- Committed to expanding effective professional learning through school-based coaching and summer institutes.
- More learning time
- Launched an extended learning period at the end of the day for prioritized students, as well as additional personalized time in the normal, daily schedule.
- High-dosage tutoring
- Since the 2021-22 school year, we have invested over $17M in high dosage tutoring as a key academic recovery strategy.
- More summer learning resources
- ESSER has supported more seats for K-8 summer learning with a focus on academic recovery in literacy and mathematics.
- Student Learning Plans
- Key roadmaps for prioritizing how a student best gets on track and how we partner with families to ensure students are getting the resources and support they need.
- Professional development
- Grants funded by The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation support teacher-led professional development efforts focused on continuous improvement.
- Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)-aligned curricula
- We will recommit to K-12 science by providing the instructional materials, scheduling the recommended time for science, supporting science teachers with professional learning opportunities, and recruiting and hiring more science-certified teachers.
- Instructional materials for science
- Elementary science equipment was purchased for traditional schools with Concentration of Poverty grants in 2020. Middle school science equipment was initially purchased for traditional schools and access to the digital edition of the curriculum continues to be provided by the district.