Superintendent analyzes student performance with KPRC 2’s Candace Burns

HOUSTON – New STAAR exam data released Tuesday by HISD reveals academic growth across the district this year.

The data includes STAAR exam results from grades 3 to 8, following the release of secondary school results last week. These exams serve as key indicators used by the state to assess student proficiency in various subjects.

KPRC 2’s Candace Burns had an exclusive one-on-one interview with Superintendent Miles to discuss the findings.

According to the data, the entire district experienced academic growth, but NES schools saw even higher gains than the district average.

Candace Burns: Can you talk about how HISD students did on this latest STAAR exam, especially compared to previous years?

Mike Miles: The short answer is that our students did very well. We are now behind the state in terms of competence. We know we’re a large urban district and most of them are behind the state average, but we’re going to try to get to the state average and then bring the average up of the state to the national average. And then we’re going to beat the national average.

Mike Miles: Over the last 5 or 6 years, our results have declined. It’s a bit uneven, isn’t it? It’s not like every level; each of these 20 exams is a direct decline. But as a group, yes, our success was diminishing. And that’s one of the reasons we had an intervention.

Candace Burns: So, in one year, we are almost witnessing a turnaround in the situation.

Mike Miles: One year does not make a trend. But we have stopped the decline, we have turned a corner and we are making progress. We have not narrowed the gap with the state; we are always behind the state. I want everyone to understand this. When you talk about improving skills, last year 40% of kids could read at grade level; now it’s 49%. This represents a 9% increase in the number of children who can read at grade level, for example.

Candace Burns: The neighborhood as a whole has seen growth. We understand why NES schools would experience growth due to the transformations on these campuses. But what explains the growth of other schools that were not part of the NES?

Mike Miles: In the end, I think people really came together. We emphasize high quality teaching. Every school has been affected this way. Principals coached, teachers conducted observations, and we aligned on what high-quality teaching looks like. We launched a high performance culture. We did some of the basic things that effective districts do. I think these things have helped us move forward and progress, even in non-NES schools.

The full results can be seen in the embed below:

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