CA students improve slightly on exit exam

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Slightly more than 90 percent of California’s high school class of 2009 passed the state’s high school exit exam. That’s a little better than the previous senior class. KPCC’s Brian Watt says the state schools chief Jack O’Connell wants to see even better results.

Brian Watt: The exam tests basic skill levels of English and math. Most seniors can’t get diplomas without passing it. O’Connell likes that more students succeed each year. But, he said, the achievement gap between white students and their Latino and African-American classmates narrowed only slightly.

Jack O’Connell: Now this is unacceptable. We are in the midst of an ever-changing global economy that requires all our students to be high level adaptable thinkers and problem solvers.

Watt: Another gap concerns O’Connell, too:

O’Connell: Our schools today are operating on $18 billion less than we had anticipated just a year ago this date.

Watt: So he worries that some schools will lose momentum as they struggle to accomplish more with less.