2023 ILEARN: Are schools still driving learning recovery?
The 2023 ILEARN results were released this week, providing our community with a window into how well students are recovering lost learning in the wake of the pandemic. For most Hoosier students, the 2022-2023 school year was the second full year of in-person learning after major learning disruptions during the previous two school years. While an individual child can’t be summed up by their score on one standardized test, analyzing ILEARN data on a system-wide level can tell us important information about how well students are progressing. It’s also important to look at data by student groups, such as race and income, to understand how schools are serving our community’s most vulnerable students.
Statewide Progress: Relatively Flat ILEARN pass rates
Last year, the statewide combined math and English Language Arts student proficiency rate saw a modest gain of 1.7 percentage points to an overall statewide ILEARN proficiency rate of 30.2%. In the 2022-2023 school year, overall statewide proficiency rates saw very small, if any, improvements across all student groups.
- The overall statewide proficiency rate remained steady, increasing by 0.4 points to 30.6%.
- Statewide proficiency for Black students increased by 1.0 point to 10.9%.
- Statewide proficiency for Latino students remained steady, increasing by 0 .1 point to 17.4%.
- Statewide proficiency for low-income students increased by 1.0 points to 17.6%.
We know that it will take several years of accelerated learning just to get back to where students were prior to the pandemic, and we know even that is unacceptable. This year’s relatively flat statewide ILEARN proficiency should be concerning to everyone who cares about the academic achievement of Hoosier students and the wellbeing of our communities. The modest statewide gains of the past two years have only recovered 25% of the 8.5 proficiency point decrease from 2019 to 2021.
At this rate, it will take at least another six years for Indiana to return to 2019 student achievement levels. Consequently, a generation of Hoosier students are at risk of having access to limited life opportunities because of lost learning. Our state must focus on strategies and investments that are proven to dramatically accelerate student learning to ensure we see more rapid gains in future years.
Marion County Progress: Gains Vary Depending on School Type and Student Group
When we examine learning recovery over the last two years, Indianapolis charter schools consistently make the largest academic gains across all student groups – significantly outpacing Marion County and statewide averages. In comparison, learning has largely stalled in township districts as a whole.
|Passing Both ELA & Math||Overall 22 to 23||Overall 21 to 23||Latino 22 to 23||Latino 21 to 23||Black 22 to 23||Black 21 to 23||FRL 22 to 23||FRL 21 to 23||SPED 22 to 23||SPED 21 to 23||ELL 22 to 23||ELL 21 to 21|
Chart: Proficiency point changes from 2022-2023 school year and from 2021-2023 school year
*Township data includes the proficiency rate for students who attend the ten Marion County townships school districts that surround IPS.
Independent charter school students make larger proficiency gains than the state overall and for Black, Latino, low-income, special education, and English Language Learner student groups. Additionally:
- Independent charter school students have achieved more than double the state average proficiency growth during the last two years of pandemic recovery.
- Black students at independent charter schools achieved proficiency rates that were three times higher than the IPS Black student average, 1.5 times higher than the Black student township average, and surpassed statewide pass rate for Black students.
- Black students at independent charter schools now outperform all but one of the 11 Marion County school districts.
- Latino students at independent charter schools achieved proficiency rates that were two times higher than the IPS Latino student average, surpassed the township average, and nearly matched the state average for Latino students.
- Special education students at independent charter schools surpassed the IPS and township average pass rate for special education students.
|Passing ELA||Overall 22 to 23||Overall 21 to 23||Latino 22 to 23||Latino 21 to 23||Black 22 to 23||Black 21 to 23||FRL 22 to 23||FRL 21 to 23|
Chart: ELA proficiency point changes from 2022-2023 school year and from 2021-2023 school year
|Passing Math||Overall 22 to 23||Overall 21 to 23||Latino 22 to 23||Latino 21 to 23||Black 22 to 23||Black 21 to 23||FRL 22 to 23||FRL 21 to 23|
Chart: Math proficiency point changes from 2022-2023 school year and from 2021-2023 school year
Independent charter school students also saw learning gains in ELA and math pass rates that surpassed township, IPS, and state pass rates for each test. These gains were seen overall and for Black, Latino, and low-income students.
Highlighting Indianapolis schools
Indianapolis charter and innovation network schools represent some of the top-performing and fastest improving schools within IPS boundaries and Marion County, especially for students of color. ILEARN highlights include:
- For Black students, 6 of the top 8 public schools within IPS boundaries are charter and innovation schools.
- For Black students, 14 of the 18 public schools within IPS boundaries that made the biggest proficiency gains this year were charter and innovation schools.
- For Latino students, 10 of the top 12 public schools within IPS boundaries are charter and innovation schools.
- Overall, 9 of the 12 public schools within IPS boundaries that made the biggest proficiency gains this year were charter and innovation schools (including the top 4).
Monitoring Achievement Gaps
Another measure of student learning is the rate at which achievement gaps are narrowed. For example, the racial achievement gap is measured by comparing the proficiency rate for white students in a district or group of schools with the proficiency rate for Black or Latino students in the same district or group of schools.
The Mind Trust is grateful for the hard work of educators, community organizations, and families across the state who are dedicated to ensuring the success of Hoosier students. It’s going to take all of us to accelerate student learning and provide the quality educational opportunities that our children deserve.