Posted on June 30, 2022
Categories: assessments, literacy, PSSA

The Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) uses scale scores that correspond to performance tiers (Below Basic, Basic, Proficient, and Advanced). This report examines average scale scores for the 3rd grade ELA PSSA from 2014-15 to 2018-19, identifying differences in scale score patterns by student demographic characteristics and by school.

Key findings:

  • Across the four ELA PSSA performance groups (Below Basic, Basic, Proficient, and Advanced), third grade students who scored in the Advanced category saw the greatest increase in average scale scores between 2014-15 to 2018-19.
  • Asian and White students in third grade had the highest performance from 2014-15 to 2018-19 and had a larger increase in average scale scores compared to their Black/African American and Hispanic/Latinx classmates.
  • Female students in third grade had higher average scale scores than male students between 2014-15 and 2018-19.
  • Although third grade English Learners (ELs) and students with an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) had lower average scale scores than their counterparts, ELs and students with an IEP saw higher increases in average scale scores in these five years than non-ELs and students without an IEP.