Both boards’ success rate below provincial average
Hamilton high school students fared worse than the Ontario average in the latest round of provincial Grade 9 math and Grade 10 literacy tests written last spring.
Results released by the Education Quality Accountability Office show 78 per cent of the public board’s Grade 9s met the Ontario standard on the academic math test for those in the university stream.
That’s one percentage point higher than the year before, but below the provincewide average success rate of 84 per cent.
The news for students writing the applied math test – for those not planning to go to university – remained grim, with only 33 per cent meeting the provincial standard, a drop of five percentage points from the previous year.
That’s also 11 percentage points below the Ontario average success rate of 44 per cent.
Catholic Grade 9 students did better than their public counterparts, despite an overall decline in results.
In academic math, 83 per cent met the standard, down two percentage points from the previous year and four percentage points from three years ago.
In applied math, 43 per cent met the standards, the same as the previous year, but down from a high of 52 per cent three years ago.
On the Grade 10 literacy test – designed to determine if students can read and write well enough to understand all subjects up to the end of Grade 9 – 80 per cent of Catholic kids met the standard, two percentage points below the average success rate.
The Catholic results continued a steady decline from three years ago, when the success rate was 86 per cent.
At the public board, 77 per cent of students met the standard. That’s the same as the previous year but is also a steady drop from four years ago, when 83 per cent did so. Students must meet the standard to graduate.
In a new release, public board education director John Malloy said the results will be used to identify student strengths and weaknesses, and “tailor specific interventions for future improvement.”
He welcomed the academic math results, noting the success rate is four percentage points higher than five years ago, but acknowledged applied math continues to be a challenge, one being addressed by a system-wide strategy.
The board also highlighted some success stories, including at Hill Park, where 63 per cent of students met the standard on the literacy test.
While still 19 percentage points below the average provincial success rate of 82 per cent, that’s far better than a year ago, when only 49 per cent did so.
Orchard Park in Stoney Creek also saw gains in math results, with 55 per cent of students meeting the standard in applied math, a jump of nine percentage points over the year before.
Eighty-three per cent of OP students met the standard on the academic math test, a three percentage point increase and just shy of the Ontario average.