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How Did Salem's MCAS Scores Compare to Surrounding Communities?

A breakdown of Salem MCAS scores compared to Danvers, Hamilton-Wenham, Manchester-Essex, and Beverly.

The Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) test results were released to the public this week. 

We've detailed how Beverly did on the 2012 MCAS test, but if you're wondering how the Witch City did in comparison to our neighbors, here's a look. 

District Proficient or Higher Needs Improvement Failing Warning Students Included Beverly ELA 72 22 6 2,249 Beverly Math 59 28 12 2,246 Danvers ELA 74 20 5 1,967 Danvers Math 61 28 11 1,962 Ham-Wen ELA 86 11 3 1,055 Ham-Wen Math 78 17 4 1,058 Manchester-Essex ELA 89 9 1 823 Manchester-Essex Math 82 15 3 825 Peabody ELA 69 24 8 3,136 Peabody Math 54 31 16 3,137 Salem ELA 53 31 16 2,384 Salem Math 43 30 27 2,397

Thoughts on the results? Let us know in the comments. 

Larry September 21, 2012 at 03:26 PM
As a young professional who lives in Salem just getting ready to start a family this is really very disheartening. My wife and I bought a house in Salem two years ago, and adore living in the city. We are painfully aware of the fact that we're not going to be able to stay here forever though because of the school system. It's disappointing, that if we want our future children to have a public education comparable to the surrounding towns we'll have to move away from a place we've really come to enjoy.
Erin Cyr September 21, 2012 at 03:45 PM
Agreed. Living in Salem has brought much joy into our lives, but we are looking into homeschooling and private schools because we can't move for a few more years. Is a turnaround possible? Of course! We have a little time to see what will happen, as my son is only 3.5, but as much as I love this community I'm not willing to let my son be a part of this broken system yet. I am very hopeful though and I believe in Salem.
Richard September 21, 2012 at 06:05 PM
I couldn't agree with you more. Thank God our child got into the Salem Academy charter school. Salem Academy was voted #1 by Boston Magazine.
Cindy Theriault September 22, 2012 at 03:51 AM
It's too bad you don't understand how to read the MCAS results and are jumping to conclusions. My student has Advance & Proficient MCAS scores. Is a student in the Salem Public Schools, is excited about taking honors in High School and then the Advanced Placement (AP) classes offered in the upper grades and I expect will apply to schools like Harvard, BC, MIT or Mass Maritime. Don't be so naive as to think you can only get a great education elsewhere. I'm sure all Salem High School students who have gone on to some of the most prestigious schools will beg to differ that you can't get a great education in Salem. Bottom line: be involved in your child's education, know who they hang around with and keep them busy.
David Pelletier September 22, 2012 at 12:30 PM
Too much no habla ingles is dragging everyone down
John Smith September 22, 2012 at 02:00 PM
Meh, smart and motivated kids generally become educated regardless of the quality of the schools they attend. As long as a school is safe and orderly (I have no idea how Salem public schools are in that regard) so a kid isn't distracted, the 'educational quality' is really only a factor for those middling students with no social/family motivation to succeed. So long as you're going to make sure that your own child is academically focused, it's not overly relevant how well a school's teachers can convince other people's kids to do their homework. I went through a safe, fairly friendly, but academically crummy public school system - I lived in a sort of way-out rural area and there weren't any other schools - but I still landed in the Ivy League. (Not that doing so is essential; just pointing out that poorly performing schools don't really hold back good students.)
susan September 23, 2012 at 02:23 AM
My grandchildren attended the Phoenix School. The admissions people can speak with you about financial aid.
susan September 23, 2012 at 02:26 AM
My grandchildren attended the Phoenix School in Salem. Great education and a good alternative to a public School education. The admissions folks can speak to you about financial aid that may be available.
Steve Russell September 24, 2012 at 12:24 PM
Many students are getting a great education here in the Salem Schools- regardless of what language they speak or their family background. Rest assured that we remain determined to extend this benefit to all children. I encourage folks to get involved. Attend the Wednesday's "Believe, Achieve, Succeed" meeting at Salem State, 79 auditorium to see for yourselves.

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