Douglas County kindergartners were below the state average in three core areas of learning during assessments that were done in the fall of 2018.

Kindergarten Assessments are performed each fall by the Oregon Department of Education’s Early Learning Division to provide a snapshot of students’ skills in early literacy, early math, and interpersonal and self-regulation skills.

“This assessment helps us measure the strength and capacity of our early learning system and the readiness of our K-12 system to serve each and every child in Oregon,” said Colt Gill, director of ODE, in a press release. “It is not about the readiness of our children. All of our children are ready to learn every day.”

Results for the 2018-19 school year were released in February and showed that statewide, students correctly answered 11.1 out of 16 math questions, scores for approach to learning were 3.6 out of 5 and kindergartners recognized on average 7.7 letter sounds, 14.3 uppercase letters and 11.7 lowercase letters.

“The first few years of a child’s life are a critical time to invest in high quality learning experiences that will continue to pay off throughout their school career,” Miriam Calderon, Oregon’s Early Learning System director, said in a press release. “We know supporting children and families from the start helps them be ready for success when they enter kindergarten, and be on track by third grade.”

The report included information on 14 Douglas County school districts and 24 schools. On average in Douglas County students scored a 10.35 in math, 3.3 in approach to learning and recognized 5.56 letter sounds, 9.86 lowercase letters and 12.4 uppercase letters.

While there was not a lot of disparity in approach to learning averages throughout the county, there was a large discrepancy in letter sound recognition. North Douglas Elementary School kindergartners recognized 2.6 of 26 letters by sound, while Yoncalla students had a recognition of 10.6.

Camas Valley School scored highest in the county on letter name recognition. Its students recognized 16.8 uppercase letters and 14.5 lowercase letters, but had a letter sound recognition of 5.

Roseburg Public Schools results fell in line with state averages in approach to learning (3.4) and early math (11.1). In early literacy the Roseburg kindergartners were just below state averages with 13.4 uppercase letter recognition, 10.8 lowercase letter recognition and 6.2 on letter sound recognition.

The new kindergartners at Hucrest Elementary School scored consistently high on the tests, leading in early math, approach to learning and uppercase letter recognition and scoring in the top of lower case letter recognition and letter sound recognition. Melrose Elementary Schools’ kindergartners led in lowercase letters and letter sounds recognition.

Sanne Godfrey can be reached at or 541-957-4203. Follow her on Twitter @sannegodfrey.

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Education Reporter

Sanne Godfrey is the education reporter for The News-Review.

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