Gabby O’Connell ‘21: Each spring, every Michigan student from grades 3-8 take an online standardized test known as the M-STEP. First administered in the spring of 2015, the M-STEP, also known as the Michigan Test of Educational Progress, measures and relays students’ academic progress to the Michigan Department of Education. The test focuses on the subjects of English Language Arts, Mathematics and Social Studies, further divided into subcategories.
Teachers in districts all across Macomb County work hard to prepare their students in the time leading up to the M-STEP.
“It is our job as teachers to challenge the students to present information in a variety of ways in order to prepare them for the M-STEP,” said Pamela Salvatore, a teacher at Romeo Middle School. “The M-STEP really is a progress exam. Students are not ‘spoon-fed’ information on the test, which is important.”
The teachers’ hard work pays off. The Michigan Department of Education recently released the scores of the 2019 M-STEP, and Macomb County’s results came out above the state average in almost every category.
Romeo Community Schools excelled in the top 5 in 7 categories, making significant improvements from the 2018 M-STEP scores.
Romeo students mainly saw an improvement in the English Language Arts and Mathematics sections. In 2018, 52.8% of students passed the English category and 48.2% passed Math. But the 2019 scores show that 54% of Romeo students passed the English and 51% passed the Math sections.
“Our teachers spend a good part of the year preparing us for the M-STEP, which is why I think we have improved over the years,” said Katherine McKieran, an eighth grader at Romeo Middle School. “Starting in January, our teachers give us exercises that help us practice for the test. Doing this gives us a feel for how the test will go and gives us a review of all subjects,” McKieran said.
The next M-STEP will take place in the spring of 2020, and with the help of Macomb County’s teachers, the outlook for even better scores looks promising.
Statistics by Macomb Daily