For the second year in a row Idyllwild School has bettered previous year Academic Performance Index scores by more than 20 points. This year Idyllwild students posted an API score of 896, a gain of 23 points from last year. Local students posted one of the highest scores in the Hemet Unified School District and Idyllwild was only one of five HUSD schools to meet all Adequate Yearly Progress targets.

For the first time since API testing began, a majority of California public schools met or exceeded the state API target of 800, according to Tom Torlakson, state superintendent of schools. Even so, the overall average API score for all grades in the state was 788, for grades 2-6, 815, for grades 7-8, 792 and for grades 9 through 11, 752. To put Idyllwild School’s achievement in perspective, 59 percent of elementary and 49 percent of middle schools in the state hit the 800 target. For Idyllwild School students to nearly break 900 is an extraordinary accomplishment, and according to Principal Matt Kraemer, a testament to the skills and commitment of his teaching staff.

The 23-point gain was the largest of any Hemet District school other than Western Center Academy charter middle school. And, only Cottonwood Elementary and Western Center posted higher overall 2012 API scores, at 902 and 955 respectively. Even more impressive, all Idyllwild School student subgroups (Hispanic or Latino, white, socioeconomically disadvantaged and students with disabilities) met their growth targets. This year, HUSD had seven schools out of 27 that met the state goal of 800.

API scores range from a low of 200 to a high of 1,000 for a school or subgroup’s performance levels based on the results of statewide testing. The state tests measure and evaluate the academic performance of public school students and the comparative growth or decline of academic performance from year to year in each public school. API scores were established in 1999 to create a new comparative academic accountability profile for students and schools within the state’s K-12 public education system.

As additional background on Idyllwild School’s continued growth in test scores, in 2004, students had an API score of 763. In 2007, Idyllwild cleared the state target of 800 with a score of 818. By 2009-10, students had improved from 840 to 844 and added another 29 points to 873 the next year. This year scores jumped to 896. Idyllwild School has established itself as one of the top academic schools in the district and the county.