Students at the Renfrew County Catholic District School Board scored above the provincial average in eight of nine assessment categories of the Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) in 2018-2019.
The EQAO conducts annual tests across Ontario in the core subjects of reading, writing and mathematics at the Grade 3 and 6 school level, as well as Grade 9 academic and applied mathematics. It also conducts an overall literacy assessment for Grade 10 students, called the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT), which is a basic requirement to receive a secondary school diploma. School boards across Ontario use the EQAO results to assess school programs and improve teaching strategies and classroom instruction in line with the Ministry of Education’s guidelines.
“Although these EQAO results are encouraging,” said Director of Education Jaimie Perry, “we will continue our efforts at RCCDSB to improve student instruction and teaching strategies, as well as increasing access to technological resources that are vital to 21st century learning.”
Areas of particular strength for the RCCDSB in the EQAO’s test results were elementary school reading and writing, said Elizabeth Burchat, Superintendent of Education Services. RCCDSB scored 85 in Grade 3 reading compared to a provincial average of 74, and 80 in Grade 3 writing compared to the province’s 69. RCCDSB’s Grade 6 reading score was 91 compared to 81 and its Grade 6 writing score was 90 to 82. “By the time they reach Grade 6, our students are continuing to achieve at a greater rate,” Burchat noted.
The RCCDSB’s mathematics scores for Grade 3 and Grade 6 were also above the provincial average, Burchat noted. RCCDSB scored 68 compared with the province’s 58 in Grade 3 math, and 51 compared to 47 in Grade 6 math.
“In both Primary and Junior math, we need to continue to support teachers and principals in teaching strategies,” Burchat said, adding that the RCCDSB introduced a new Math Resource this year for Grade 1 to 8 students. “We are very excited about this new resource,” said Burchat. “It will support daily math instruction and assessment to close gaps in student learning, long-range planning, and parent engagement,” she said. “These technologies are often key to equitable and inclusive learning opportunities for all students. We also are engaging principals and vice-principals in learning about teaching strategies, as well as how to drive change in their schools.”
At the secondary school level, RCCDSB also outscored the provincial average with 93 compared to the provincial average of 84 in Grade 9 academic math, and 58 to 44 in Grade 9 applied math. The RCCDSB continues to be strongly focused on improving mathematics and literacy skills in both of its high schools, said Mark Searson, Superintendent of Education Services. “We have created a professional development program titled Supporting Students’ Mathematics Transitions Grade 7–9,” said Searson, “to help students transition to secondary school math curriculum.”
The only area in which the RCCDSB scored below the provincial average was the OSSLT, which assesses overall literacy at the Grade 10 level. The RCCDSB score was 75 compared with 80 for the provincial average, but Searson said the Board is committed to improving that score. “Both secondary schools will continue to focus on a cross-curricular approach to literacy and ensure that fundamental literacy skills are taught throughout the entire secondary curriculum,” he said.
“The RCCDSB is dedicated to helping our students achieve their personal best in a healthy, supportive environment,” said Director of Education Perry. “We congratulate our students, teachers and administrative staff on all of their efforts in 2018-2019. The EQAO results show us where we are doing well and key areas where we can improve. Now we can move forward with confidence in the direction we are taking.”
September 27, 2019
For further information, please contact:
Jaimie Perry, Director of Education
Renfrew County Catholic District School Board
499 Pembroke Street West
Pembroke, ON K8A 5P1
Phone: 613-735-1031 or 1-800-267-0191