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Rachel Nipper, a fifth-grader at Landstuhl Elementary and Middle School, receives her copy of the TerraNova test Wednesday from Jennifer Henry, her homeroom teacher.

Rachel Nipper, a fifth-grader at Landstuhl Elementary and Middle School, receives her copy of the TerraNova test Wednesday from Jennifer Henry, her homeroom teacher. (Ben Bloker / S&S)

Rachel Nipper, a fifth-grader at Landstuhl Elementary and Middle School, receives her copy of the TerraNova test Wednesday from Jennifer Henry, her homeroom teacher.

Rachel Nipper, a fifth-grader at Landstuhl Elementary and Middle School, receives her copy of the TerraNova test Wednesday from Jennifer Henry, her homeroom teacher. (Ben Bloker / S&S)

Nicholas Elden, a 5th grader at Landstuhl Elementary and Middle School, looks through his copy of the TerraNova test March 14th.

Nicholas Elden, a 5th grader at Landstuhl Elementary and Middle School, looks through his copy of the TerraNova test March 14th. (Ben Bloker / S&S)

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — Department of Defense Dependents Schools students worldwide continue to perform better than the national average on standardized tests and made gains in 2007 in math, science and social studies.

Department of Defense Education Activity released results for this past spring’s TerraNova testing showing students exceeding the national average by 10 to 25 percentile points overall.

The nearly 25,000 students in Europe who took the test scored better than the national average and outscored the DODEA-wide scores in every subject, according to statistics released by Department of Defense Dependents Schools-Europe.

The school activity’s Community Strategic Plan has mandated that 75 percent of all students score at or above the national average by 2011.

“I’m pleased with the results,” said Shirley Miles, DODEA associate director of education and principal deputy director, in a telephone interview. “I think we are well on our way to reaching that mark.”

Students in third grade through 11th grade take the standardized test annually. The tests help parents see how their sons and daughters compare with other students who take the test. The exams also help administrators and teachers shape curriculum.

While students made gains in math, science and social science in 2007, reading and language scores matched those in 2006.

In Europe, a higher percentage of high school students scored above the national average compared with elementary students in third, fourth and fifth grades.

Median percentiles in ninthth, 10th and 11th grade were in the low to mid-70s in reading, math, science, and language. The median percentiles for elementary students were in the mid to upper 60s for those same subjects.

Defense Department schools break down the test scoring in percentages. For example, a score of 70 percent would mean than 70 percent of the students scored higher than the norm group and 30 percent scored below it.

An increase of 1 to 4 percent a year in the number of European-based students who score above the national average is needed to meet the 2011 goal.


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