There is only one test in all of New Jersey that is required to be taken by all 11th graders: the High School Performance Assessment, better known by the acronym HSPA.
Results for the baseline test, which was administered in the spring of 2013 to juniors (who have now risen to seniors), were recently released, and West Morris Central and Mendham High Schools have made it no secret their students belong among the best in the state.
With a combined score of 497.2 in language arts and math, Mendham High School students ranked No. 10 among the state’s high schools. Central, with a combined score of 494.8, came in No. 15 overall.
The top school in the state was Millburn High School with a composite score of 505. There was just one other Morris County school in the top 20 scores: Chatham High School was ranked No. 8 with a composite score of 498.4. There are more than 300 public high schools in New Jersey that take the test annually.
Mendham’s individual score for math was 12th highest in the state, while language arts was sixth highest.
Central’s scores saw a drastic improvement in its individual scores, as it went from No. 52 in 2011’s math scores to No. 15 in 2013. In language arts, Central students went from No. 44 in 2011 to No. 18 in 2013.
While the schools continue to impress with students’ test score achievements, the statewide assessment will soon be a thing of the past. New Jersey is moving from the HSPA analysis – with the final test coming in the spring of 2014 – to Common Core Standards.
HSPA scores are added by the New Jersey Department of Education.
What do you make of the HSPA test? Do you think it’s a fair baseline for student and school comparison throughout the state?