Lynch Parents Concerned About Low MCAS Scores
For the second year in a row, Lynch score decreased and are the lowest in the district.
Earlier this fall, the state released last year’s MCAS (Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System) results. And while Winchester’s scores remained steady from the previous year, parents at the Lynch Elementary School noticed a troubling pattern.
This is the second year that Lynch’s scores have decreased, putting the school in the improvement status, in accordance with No Child Left Behind. The scores at Lynch (ELA – 72; Math – 71), while still ahead of the state scores (ELA – 69; Math – 58), have fallen behind the rest of the district’s elementary schools.
Ambrose students scored an 86 in ELA and 81 in math; Lincoln scored an 89 in ELA and 87 in math; Muraco had a 92 in ELA and 85 in math; and Vinson-Owen students scored a 92 in the ELA section and an 85 in the math.
The growing discrepancy has alarmed parents in the Lynch community, and at Tuesday night’s School Committee meeting they voiced their opinions.
“There’s a growing cause for concern,” said Lynch parent, Ed Crayer to the committee. “We sit here before you as a group of concerned parents. We welcome the opportunity to dig into the results and what it means and the challenges we face.”
A Different School
According to Lynch parent, Barbara Shegog, Lynch has three self-contained classrooms, is the only elementary school in the district that has a pre-school. Lynch is also the only school in the district that offers Title I services.
“We keep hearing about parity and equity,” Shegog said, “but I think it’s time we relook and rethink that. Lynch made need more or different resources. We need to be sure that the teachers, students and staff have everything they need to be successful.”
McAlduff also acknowledged that Lynch has more ELL students than the other elementary schools and this past year, needed to hire an additional teacher to “reflect that increasing number of ELL students.”
“The district recognizes the changing demographic and the challenges we face,” McAlduff said. “The implication is that when a school is put on the improvement status, it’s failing, but we know that’s not the case. We know Lynch is not failing school; it’s a great school.”
But the downward trend at Lynch has concerned McAlduff.
“Scores have dropped the last two years at Lynch and we’re not happy about that,” McAlduff said. “We need to figure out the reasons for that. Lynch is tracking below the district average, and we need to get a better handle on what that means.”