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Rising Test Scores Qualify 548 Schools for Bonuses

May 04, 1986|ELAINE WOO | Times Staff Writer

Although many school officials in Los Angeles County privately express reservations about the state Department of Education's cash-incentive program to improve scores on the California Assessment Program tests, they publicly laud the reward system--especially if their school won.

This year, 134 county high schools will receive bonus money, ranging from $219 at Rosemead High School in the El Monte school district to $168,800 at Bell Gardens High School in the Montebello district.

48% Raised Scores

Statewide, 548 high schools, or 48%, raised their scores in reading, writing, mathematics and spelling to qualify for the incentive money. Other factors determining the amount of the awards include the number of students who took the test and how well they performed in specific categories. A total of $14.6 million will be distributed this year, the second year of the state-funded program.

"I couldn't begin to tell you how excited we were without carrying on like a maniac," said Bell Gardens Principal Frances Riley. The Montebello school earned the second-highest amount in the state, following Roosevelt High School in Fresno, which won $192,000.

Bell Gardens did not qualify for a cash award last year, Riley said, so the staff and students doubled their efforts to prepare this year's seniors to take the test and hoped their hard work would pay off.

"All I was worrying about was a couple thousand dollars to pay for annuals for the seniors," Riley said. "When we found out how much we won, we could not believe it. I thought for sure some error had been made."

Committees Required

Most of the winning schools have yet to decide how they will spend their earnings. Under the state guidelines, each school must establish a committee of students, teachers and parents to determine how the money will be used.

Last year, many schools used the funds to beautify their campus or to purchase new computers and other supplies. Others also tried to use a portion of the cash to help seniors with their graduation expenses.

According to state guidelines, a school qualifies for the incentive award if its overall score rises and if at least 93% of the seniors took the exam. In Los Angeles County, as in the state as a whole, scores generally rose this year, except in reading which dipped slightly.

Another winner was Culver City High School, which will receive $5,595. Although Principal Glenn Cook said he is not a fan of the state's incentive program because many students "see through this money-for-test-scores thing and are not real excited about it," he said he has no intention of refusing the money. "Sure, we'll take it," he said, noting that the money could be put to good use in beautification projects and buying supplies.

1985-86 TEST SCORES FOR 12TH GRADERS

State, County Averages

STATE OF CALIFORNIA

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 62.2 62.6 69.4 67.4 84-85 62.9 63.2 69.7 68.3 85-86 62.7 63.4 70.1 68.7

LOS ANGELES COUNTY

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 59.4 59.8 68.0 64.3 84-85 60.1 60.5 68.3 65.3 85-86 58.6 59.8 68.0 65.0

District and School Averages

Beverly Hills Unified

DISTRICT AVERAGE

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 67.8 72.0 72.7 76.8 84-85 68.8 72.8 74.4 78.4 85-86 67.3 72.1 75.4 78.4

BEVERLY HILLS HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 67.8 72.0 72.7 76.8 84-85 68.8 72.8 74.4 78.4 85-86 67.3 72.1 75.4 78.4

Culver City Unified

DISTRICT AVERAGE

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 62.8 62.9 72.2 67.1 84-85 62.7 63.7 68.7 70.6 85-86 62.4 65.1 69.3 69.7

CULVER CITY HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 62.8 62.9 72.2 67.1 84-85 62.7 63.7 68.7 70.6 85-86 62.4 65.1 69.3 69.7

Los Angeles Unified

DISTRICT AVERAGE

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 56.4 56.6 65.8 61.3 84-85 57.3 57.4 66.7 62.3 85-86 56.7 57.5 66.8 62.5

FAIRFAX HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 59.0 60.1 68.1 64.5 84-85 59.3 61.4 70.3 65.7 85-86 57.4 59.2 69.1 64.5

FAIRFAX MAGNET

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 63.0 70.0 73.3 67.7 84-85 63.0 65.2 72.1 64.2 85-86 63.8 62.6 73.7 67.6

HAMILTON HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 54.5 52.6 64.0 56.1 84-85 58.7 58.1 65.9 60.7 85-86 57.2 57.5 65.3 60.5

HAMILTON HUMANITIES

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 66.5 71.4 73.4 69.8 84-85 74.0 65.5 72.1 71.1 85-86 73.8 73.7 72.4 73.4

HOLLYWOOD HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 50.5 51.1 60.7 58.4 84-85 51.2 50.8 65.3 56.8 85-86 51.2 52.7 64.0 58.4

HOLLYWOOD PERF. ARTS

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 65.3 64.4 70.5 63.2 84-85 67.0 63.0 72.5 61.1 85-86 62.1 63.3 66.1 60.1

LOS ANGELES C.E.S.

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 62.5 69.3 69.7 70.6 84-85 67.1 69.2 77.3 71.2 85-86 74.2 72.5 79.2 75.3

PALISADES HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 65.9 66.3 70.4 70.1 84-85 67.8 67.0 73.5 72.2 85-86 64.6 66.6 74.4 70.1

UNIVERSITY HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 64.7 65.3 70.9 72.2 84-85 64.7 67.3 70.6 72.3 85-86 63.4 65.6 71.6 71.6

VENICE HIGH

Reading Writing Spelling Math 83-84 59.8 60.8 68.7 65.9 84-85 60.8 61.6 68.3 65.7 85-86 61.1 60.8 67.9 64.8

WESTCHESTER

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