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Tech Schools Make Big Gains On CAPT

September 2, 2005
By ROBERT A. FRAHM, Courant Staff Writer

The state's technical high school system, led by a reform-minded superintendent who came under fire for her efforts to bolster reading and mathematics, made dramatic gains on statewide achievement test results announced Thursday.

The 17 regional technical schools posted their highest overall results ever on the Connecticut Academic Performance Test, an annual exam of reading, mathematics, writing and science given to the state's 10th-graders.

Scores for All Towns

(PDF document, 1 page)

"I was elated. This really shows the hard work our teachers and students did. ... It shows it can be done," said Superintendent Abigail L. Hughes, who has been the target of a teachers' union campaign to oust her.

The improvement continues a trend that began before Hughes arrived as superintendent a year ago and shook up the system with a series of aggressive reforms.

Hughes drew sharp criticism from union leaders and an overwhelming no-confidence vote from teachers last spring after imposing curriculum, training and scheduling changes designed to raise low scores, reduce high suspension rates and improve the system's image.

Whether the latest results will temper that criticism remains to be seen, but educators in the 11,000-student system were pleased with Thursday's report.

"It's a nice beginning" to the school year, said Greg Forte, a math teacher at Wilcox Technical High School in Meriden, where 75 percent of the sophomores scored at a proficient level in mathematics, an increase of 11 percentage points since last year. In science, 89 percent met the proficiency standard, a 20 percent-


Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant. To view other stories on this topic, search the Hartford Courant Archives at http://www.courant.com/archives.
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