Monday, July 16, 2018
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Reading results mixed on first statewide NeSA test

Gothenburg Public School students meet, exceed standards.

More students enrolled in Gothenburg Public Schools met or exceeded standards compared to those who didn’t on a first-ever statewide reading test.

Last year’s sixth and 11th graders scored higher than the state average in the seven grades tested while two grades—fourth and fifth—tied the state score.


Results for the NeSA (Nebraska State Accountability) tests, taken last spring by students grades 3-8 and 11, were recently released by the Nebraska State Department of Education.


Last year’s third and 11th graders had the highest number of students who exceeded standards—each at 23%.

Sixth graders showed the top percentage (70%) in meeting reading standards while seventh graders had the lowest percentage of students who fell below standards at 49%.

“We now know our strengths and the areas in which we need to improve,” said junior high principal and curriculum director Ryan Groene. “We’re going to bring the improvement areas up next year.”

One of the biggest strengths shown by students, Groene said, was their ability to identify and explain literary devices such as similes, metaphors, alliteration and rhythm and the context of what they read for the test.

However improvement is needed in recognizing and judging passages, he said.

For the test, students read passages and answered multiple-choice questions to see if they met specific academic benchmarks.

Groene said Gothenburg’s teachers have done a great job of aligning curriculum with state standards especially with the new NeSA test.

“They have been very professional in how they’ve handled it,” he said.

Up until now, Nebraska school districts have used

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