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Board Meetings
Highlights of Bluewater Results

June 19, 2007

Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test, 2006-2007

•     The purpose of the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test 9OSSLT) is to determine whether a student has the literacy (reading and writing) skills required to meet the standard for understanding reading selections and communicating in a variety of writing forms expected by The Ontario Curriculum across all subjects up to the end of Grade 9.

•     Successful completion of the test or of the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Course is one of the 32 requirements for an Ontario Secondary School Diploma.

•     The 2006-2007 OSSLT measured  the same literacy skills and maintains the same standard of achievement as in previous years.  The standard was established by panels of educators, assessment experts and members of the public.

•     Results from EQAO testing are important indicators of student learning that measure achievement in relation to a common provincial standard.  The objective and reliable information gained through these assessments adds to the current knowledge about how Ontario students are doing and has become an important tool for improvement planning at the student, school, school board and provincial levels.

•     EQAO tests are developed by Ontario teachers, and all aspects of EQAO’s assessment programs are reviewed and validated by experts in the field of large-scale assessment.  EQAO results are valid, reliable and comparable from year to year.


Highlights of Bluewater Achievement Results

The following are observations about this year’s results in light of those of the past five year:

•     82% of students taking the test for the first time were successful, compared to 72% in 2002.

•     The success rate for students enrolled in an academic English course increased by 5 percentage points, from 92% in 2002 to 97% in 2007.

•     The success rate for students enrolled in an applied English course increased by 22 percentage points, from 48% in 2002 to 70% in 2007. 

•     The success rate for boys increased by 14 percentage points, from 64% in 2002 to 78% in 2007.  The success rate for girls increased by 5 percentage points, from 80% in 2002 to 85% in 2007.

•     The success rate for students with special needs increased by 17 percentage points, from 34% in 2002 to 51% in 2007.


Feedback about what students have learned provides the foundation for progress.  The large-scale assessments administered by EQAO and the classroom assessments administered by teachers each provide valuable kinds of information.  When used together, they provide students, parents, teachers and administrators with a valuable picture of student knowledge and skills.  Objective information provides an accurate basis for improvement planning and goal setting.

While EQAO results are an important indicator of achievement according to curriculum expectations, they are only one source of information.  For this reason, it is not appropriate to make judgments about a school’s quality based solely on this one indicator.

EQAO encourages the use of data to identify schools that have show improvement over time and to gain an understanding of how their approaches are working.  Their successful strategies can then be used by similar schools as a model to improve student learning.  EQAO promotes the use of its data for engaging school staff and parent sin dialogue about student achievement.


•     Students across Bluewater wrote the test on March 29, 2007.

•     94% of students who were eligible to take the test for the first time wrote the test.

•     Of the 1,707 students who wrote the test for the first time, 82% were successful

•     Of the 275 fully participating students retaking the test, 51% were successful

•     Students who do not pass the OSSLT have another opportunity to write the test or to participate in the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Course.

School Success Stories

“All eleven secondary schools have sustained pass rates greater than 75% for the past three years.  It is a tribute to the dedication and hard work of our staff and students” stated Alana Murray, Superintendent of Secondary Education.

Foundations for Learning—Quality

We value:

•     a standard of excellence throughout our system

•     clear, consistent expectations that focus on student success

•     the importance of individuals setting high standards in all areas of personal growth

•     the teaching and use of effective thinking skills

•     assessment and evaluation as tools to improve student learning

•     a strong learning program, enhanced by co-curricular activities and real world experiences

•     literacy and numeracy as foundational skills for student success

For further information please contact:

Alana Murray, Superintendent of Secondary Education
Bluewater District School Board
P.O. Box 190
351 1st. Ave. N
Chesley, Ontario
N0G 2V0
Phone: 519-363-2014
Fax: 519-363-3448

Learning for a Lifetime





© 2013 - Bluewater District School Board