This Fraser Institute graph compares SD69 elementary schools based on Fundamental Skills Assessment test results and other indicators based on those test results. School District 69 and others are seeking for the Ministry of Education to not provide the names of schools or districts when publicly publishing overall test scores, calling the process of ranking schools unfair. — Fraser Institute screen capture

BC school district wants an end to public circulation of test scores

Qualicum asks ministry what steps have been made to mask identity of schools, districts

School District 69 (Qualicum) has sent a letter asking the Ministry of Education what it’s doing to hide the names of schools and districts when releasing test scores to the public.

A process of ranking schools using test scores from Fundamental Skills Assessments (given in Grades 4 and 7) has been going on for years, with the Fraser Institute regularly releasing a school ranking based on the scores: www.fraserinstitute.org/school-performance

SD69 is not the first to call the ranking of schools based on the test scores unfair, with the B.C. School Trustees Association (BCSTA) asking the Ministry of Education (MOE) “that individual school results not be publicly released,” in 2017.

“Any public circulation of school results inevitably leads to the public ranking of schools by outside groups. This ongoing practice is certainly harmful and unfortunate. Perhaps the only solution is not to create consolidated school-based results in the first place,” reads the letter.

But SD69 is now asking what action the MOE has taken since then.

“School boards and other education stakeholders had high hopes that when the newly revised FSA was rolled out and implemented in the fall of 2017 that there would be protective measures in place to avoid abuse of data and information,” reads SD69’s letter. “Unfortunately that has not happened.”

“Two revised-FSA cycles have come and gone and Boards of Education still have no assurances that information for public consumption will be masked or otherwise unidentifiable of individual schools and districts.”

In news reports, BCSTA president Gordon Swan has said that the demographics of a school can effect test scores, with disadvantaged students like those with special needs or students who’ve newly arrived in Canada and who’s primary language isn’t English tending to score worse on tests.

Ranking schools based on these scores is therefore unfair, he said, as some schools have a higher percentage of disadvantaged students than others.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cowichan Valley Regional District will reopen three arenas in August

Ice will go back in at Lake Cowichan, Cowichan Community Centre and Kerry Park

Business notes: Salt Spring Therapeutic Riding Association launches program for front-line workers

A sample of what’s happening in Cowichan’s business community

UPDATE: RCMP use spike belts to end car chase — man in custody

The driver was arrested at the scene a short distance from his vehicle

Motorcyclist airlifted after collision in Cobble Hill

Residents describe intersection of Telegraph and Hutchinson as “dangerous” and “problematic”

Tent Island closed due to neglect and abuse from campers

Illegal campfires common on Penelakut Tribe reserve land

371 British Columbians battling COVID-19, health officials confirm

Thursday (Aug. 6) saw a second straight day of nearly 50 new confirmed cases

Island youth starts virtual race against racism

Cailyn Collins says people can take part in the cause from anywhere

COVID-19 tests come back negative for remote First Nation

“There are no suspected cases in the community at this time.”

Answers to 5 common questions facing families for the COVID-19 school year

COVID-19 protocols are likely to vary even more at the school board level, and even and school-to-school.

Visitors and non-residents entering closed remote B.C. First Nation’s territories

With limited resources, they say they don’t have any authority or power to enforce the closures

UBC loses appeal on Fisheries Act convictions

BC Supreme Court upholds order to pay $1.55-million fine

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

Acclaimed B.C. actor Brent Carver passes away

Carver, one of Canada’s greatest actors with a career spanning 40 years, passed away at home in Cranbrook

Most Read