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Students Honored for Perfect STAR Test Scores

In a packed ceremony before the school board meeting at the Middle School Tuesday night, 84 students received a certificate recognizing their achievement.

Nearly 200 Mill Valley students, parents, teachers and administrators packed into the Tuesday evening to honor 84 students who achieved a perfect 600 score on the (Standardized Testing and Reporting) tests.

“This is a huge achievement,” Superintendent Paul Johnson said as he doled out certificates to each of the students, including four sets of siblings.

The students took the tests in Math, English, Language Arts or Science during the spring 2011 testing period, when each school completed 85 percent of its instructional year, according to state officials. The tests are administered to students in grades 2 to 8.

“While this is but one measure of success for our students, schools, and district, the school board is pleased to celebrate these accomplishments with our community,” district officials said in a statement.

Results for the tests are published in August just before the start of the new school year. The 2011 results show that a high percentage of Marin students, and Mill Valley students in particular, outperformed state standards.

At all grade levels, and in all subjects, schools in the district met or exceeded the state’s STAR goals that students reach the “proficient” level, which means they understand and master the material of their grade level. Tam High also met or exceeded the goals in most subjects.

In Marin, 73.4 percent of students were proficient or advanced in English -- compared with 54 percent statewide. And 66.1 percent of Marin students were proficient or advanced in math, while just 50 percent were in California.

In Mill Valley, the scores were even higher. Across the district, which includes , , ,  and  elementary schools, 87 percent of students are at or above proficiency in math and in language arts.

You can see the full STAR results here. The results are divided into grade levels and socioeconomic subdivisions. At both the state and county level, the scores are on the rise from previous years. You can see local results from last year .

State and federal goals from the No Child Left Behind program aim to have all students at or above a proficient level in basic language arts and math tests by 2014.

School results are used to determine a school's Academic Performance Index (API) – a measure of its performance from year to year. In addition to STAR results, for high schools the API takes into account graduation rates and performance on the California High School Exit Exam. Along with certain yearly goal targets, schools must meet API and graduation targets.

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