New Berlin official pleased with consistent results

Schools compare well with bordering districts WKCEs

April 24, 2012

New Berlin - Once again, the statewide Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Exam shows that New Berlin schools are doing a good job keeping students working at or above grade level, said Eileen Depka, New Berlin's new director of curriculum, instruction, assessment and reporting.

Although she will not officially start on the job until May 1, Depka gave a presentation on the WKCE scores to the School Board on Monday.

The WKCEs, taken by students in November, do not measure how high students achieve, but whether the schools successfully keep them from falling behind. The goal is for all students to be either proficient or advanced in each of the five subjects WKCE tests - math, reading, language arts which includes spelling and grammar, science and social studies.

"The scores are consistently high," Depka said before the meeting. "And the advanced scores are extremely strong."

New Berlin is consistently toward the top compared with the school districts it borders, she said. And compared with Elmbrook, Greendale, Greenfield, Whitnall, Muskego-Norway, Waukesha and West Allis, New Berlin is among the highest in reading and math, she said.

And more than that, those high scores have been consistent over time, she said.

This year language arts did dip a bit, Depka said, but that happened pretty much all over the state, possibly indicating a problem with this year's test, rather than the students.

Despite the schools' high marks, they still aren't at 100 percent of students at or above grade level, she acknowledged. For example, 200 students were at basic or minimal levels in reading. Those are spread across the seven grades tested, yielding an average of 28 students per grade who are apparently struggling to keep up.

To help, the schools always give special attention to students scoring minimal or basic to help them get to where they need to be, Depka said.

Percentage of students scoring proficient or advanced on statewide WKCE exams

New BerlinMuskegoElmbrookWest Allis-West MilwaukeeWest Allis schools serving New Berlin
GradeMathReading MathReadingMathReadingMathReadingMathReading
Eighth 88938891949581848587

A wider look at WKCE scores

Rank for New Berlin and Muskego in four-county area (47 schools, grades 3-8, and 36 high schools, grade 10) Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Washington and Waukesha

New BerlinMuskego
GradeMathReading MathReading
ThirdTied for 28thTied for 34thTied for 18thTied for 14th
FourthTied for 26th Tied for 32nd Tied for 16thTied for 14th
FifthTied for 28th Tied for 29th Tied for 30thTied for 29th
SixthTied for ninth Tied for 12th Tied for 15thTied for 14th
SeventhTied for 22nd Tied for 21st Tied for 23rd19th
EighthTied for 29thTied for 18th29thTied for 24th
10thTied for eighthTied for thirdseventhTied for third


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