Test Scores are Improving; Tri-Districts Boast Large Class Sizes

A breakdown of how the tri-district schools performed last year

The New Jersey Department of Education released report cards for the performance of every school in the state during the 2010-11 year Thursday.

Overall, the tri-district schools are scoring higher than their District Factor Group (DFG) counterparts in Language Arts, but mathematics continues to be a struggle in some grades levels. Per-pupil expenditures are down but class sizes have increased at the same time.

reported spending $13,860 per student for the 2010-2011 school year. The was spending $18,428 per pupil with the averaging $18,429. was spending $14,156 per pupil with 's expenditures at $14,156.

The cost includes district expenditures on classroom instructional costs, support services, administrative costs, operations/maintenance, extracurricular, transportation and other costs. The total of these expenditures is divided by the average daily enrollment to calculate a total comparative cost per pupil.

Here's a breakdown of the report card results for each district:


Language Arts scores have continued to improve as more students are scoring at a proficient or advanced proficient level at OPS and exceeding not only the state average but the DFG as well. In  mathematics, fifth grade scored the highest marks with 73.3% advanced proficient, double the state average of 39.8%; third grade was the second highest with 72.5% advanced proficient. Oradell's dedication to science had fourth grade recording 45% proficient and 48.8% advanced, which is on par with the state average.

OPS has the highest average class sizes on the elementary school level with 21-23 students per class as an average from kindergarten through sixth grade during 2010-11 when there were 790 students in attendance.

River Dell

The Regional Middle School and High School unfortunately boasts the highest class sizes across the tri-district with 24 students in the seventh grade; 19 in eighth grade; 26 freshman; 28 sophomores; and 25 juniors. Only the senior classes had 20 students per classroom.

Luckily though, test scores are slowly improving with seventh graders recording 67.7% proficient (above the state 51.5% and DFG 59.8% averages) and 14.7% advanced in language arts (above the state 12.5% average but below the 22.7% DFG). Seventh grade performed betterin mathetmatics with 43.2% advanced which is better than the DFG 39% and state 24.6% averages. Eighth grade scored a 67.8% proficient in language arts to outperform the DFG (59.9%) and state (63.4%); the same age group was just under 50% advanced in mathematics which is well above the DFG (47.1%) and state (30.8%).

River Dell has a 93.25% graduation rate and approximately one-quarter of the student body are enrolled in Advanced Placement courses. River Dell offers 12 AP classes but 18 AP exams. 

For the second year in a row, seniors have recorded lower average SAT scores on the verbal section. The 2009 graduation class scored an average 533 and that number has declined to 529 in 2010 and finally to 517 in 2011. Both mathematics and essay scores have bounced back and forth over the past three years.

The junior class had a 63-30 split for proficient to advanced on the HSPA Language Arts section and a 50-36 division between proficient and advanced in mathematics. Students may be outscoring their state-wide peers, they are considered to be underperforming their DFG counterparts.

River Edge

Cherry Hill class sizes range from 19 to 23 students in a class while Roosevelt has 20 to 23 students.

On an average, Cherry Hill third through sixth graders have a higher language arts proficiency and advanced mathematics scores; fourth grade science is stronger on an advanced proficient level.

Roosevelt third and fifth graders follow a similar pattern as does fourth grade science. Fourth grade is higher in language arts proficiency but split 49-48 in mathematics. Sixth grade flipped with more advanced proficiency in language arts and mathematics proficiency levels.

Beginning next school year, the Department will develop and publish new school performance reports for every school in New Jersey to replace the current School Report Card and NCLB Report Card publications. 

Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Eamon Harbord at Eamon.Harbord@patch.com, or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.


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