What is this indicator?
This goal is measured by tracking students’ performance on The California Standards Test (CST) in Santa Monica public schools. The number of students who scored proficient or advanced in English Language Arts was divided by the total number of students who took the test. The test measures such areas as word analysis, reading comprehension, and writing. This data comes from the City of Santa Monica’s Youth Well being Report Card which is produced by the Santa Monica Cradle to Career (smC2C) Initiative.
Why is it important?
Proficiency in language arts, particularly writing ability,gives students valuable tools to succeed in school and eventually their careers. Studies show that students who fall too far behind in language arts proficiency by 3rd grade rarely catch up. These students may be more likely to drop out of high school, which has a huge impact on later career success.
How are we doing?
More than 30% of 3rd graders in Santa Monica public schools are not proficient in language arts. In 2017, proficiency levels were 69.2%., However,the overall proficiency rate for Santa Monica is much higher than county and statewide rates. Students from low income households and those living in the downtown area and Pico Neighborhood are particularly vulnerable.
The Santa Monica Cradle to Career (smC2C) Youth Resource Team has adopted a 'whatever it takes' approach to connecting the most vulnerable older youth with the services they need. The Youth Resource Team is expanding their focus to include vulnerable youth in younger age groups,specifically birth to five year olds and middle school students. In addition to these services, the new branch library at Virginia Avenue Park will increase access to reading and learning opportunities for Pico Neighborhood residents.
How can I help?
Volunteering to mentor or tutor youth is a great way to make a difference. Parents, caregivers, and educators can find direct services that support learning and literacy for elementary school children online.