April 15, 2010
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The latest literacy assessment results show that Grade 7 middle school students held steady in 2009 compared to 2008, while Grade 10 high school students made gains.
The 2009 literacy assessment was administered to Grade 7 anglophone students last fall. Results for the reading assessment show that the percentage of students at or above the appropriate reading level dipped to 66.9 per cent from 67.4 per cent. For the writing assessment, the number of students at the appropriate level or above remained the same from the previous year at 51.9 per cent, but this was up from 47 per cent in 2007. The provincial target is 85 per cent of students reaching or exceeding the appropriate level in literacy.
The 2009 literacy assessment for French was administered to Grade 10 immersion students in the anglophone system last spring. Seventy-four per cent of these students met or exceeded the appropriate achievement level in reading, an increase of 4.9 percentage points. On the writing component, 47 per cent attained a score at the appropriate achievement level or above, an increase of 1.4 percentage points. The goal is for 85 per cent of students reaching or exceeding appropriate levels of achievement in reading and writing in French.
"We are aware of the challenges at the middle and high school levels, and there are plans and strategies in place to address them," said acting education minister Donald Arseneault. "We have been making great strides in the early grades with literacy, and we are now turning our attention to the higher grades and seeing results. The gain for Grade 10 students is positive, and Grade 7 students are holding their own as everyone in the education systems works together to ensure our students have the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the 21st century."
English literacy skills are assessed at grades 2, 4, 7 and 9. French literacy skills for immersion students are assessed at grades 4 and 10 as well as oral at grades 5 (Intensive French), 10 and 12.
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Kilfoil, communications, Department of Education, 506-444-4919.