2023 state assessment data released

LPS students continue to outpace the Colorado state average on state assessment test scores and growth;

LPS scores returning to or exceeding Pre-COVID levels; 2023 data shows significant gains as well as some areas of concern 

Today, the Colorado Department of Education released last spring’s scores from the Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) tests and the PSAT/SAT. The Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) is the state’s common measurement of students’ progress at the end of the school year for students in grades three through eight in English language arts, math and science. The PSAT and SAT exams, taken by Colorado’s 9th-, 10th- and 11th-graders, are aligned to the Colorado Academic Standards and offer free, high-quality practice tools and scholarship opportunities. Ninth-graders and 10th-graders take the PSAT and 11th-graders take the SAT as the state college-entrance exam.

Student performance is based on the level of mastery of the state standards.  LPS’ curricula and instruction have been developed to align with the Colorado Academic Standards.  Ongoing classroom-level, building-level, and district-level assessments provide information about student achievement of LPS expectations. The results of these assessments help us determine the impact COVID had on student learning, meet the individual needs of students, and help us evaluate instructional programming and curriculum implementation.

What do the spring 2023 CMAS/PSAT/SAT data tell us?

Overall, LPS student achievement results are on a similar trend to the state results and there are bright spots of high performance in individual schools and grade levels.

Littleton Public Schools students exceeded state averages for the percent of students meeting or exceeding expectations in English language arts, math, and science in grades 3 through 8.

The median growth percentile for LPS elementary and middle school students is higher than that of the state in both English language arts and math.

The median growth percentile for elementary students with an Individualized Educational Plan was higher than that of elementary students at the state level for both English language arts and math.

LPS students overall are consistently scoring higher in English language arts than in math. English language arts scores are remaining steady.

As elementary students progress from year to year, more achieve proficiency toward grade level standards.

We continue to experience the impacts of COVID; LPS grade 3 English language arts scores are 50% at proficiency or above.  These students were kindergartners in the spring of 2020. 

LPS student growth in math is promising, outpacing growth at the state level and also outpacing growth in English language arts. 

Overall, LPS middle school grades 6, 7, and 8 show gains in all content areas, compared to flat data at the state level.  LPS middle school results show multiple years of improvement since COVID and in some cases exceed pre-COVID achievement.

LPS middle school students made gains in math over last year. However, the number of students scoring three or more levels below grade level in math is very small, but it is increasing. Math achievement continues to be an area of focus in LPS. 

LPS middle school English language arts scores continue to track back toward pre-COVID numbers or exceed them in the case of grade 6.

Fewer LPS students in grades 8 and 11 participated in the science assessment compared to other assessments, but the data have returned to pre-covid numbers and exceed them in many cases.

The majority of LPS 9th, 10th, and 11th graders who took College Board PSAT and SAT tests are on trajectory to meet college and career readiness, outpacing the state.

The median growth percentile for LPS high school students with an individualized Educational Plan is higher than that of the students with an Individualized Educational Plan at the state level in both English language arts and math. 

At least 20% more students in LPS met or exceeded the benchmark on the PSAT 9 and SAT than did students across the state. 

At least 15% more students in LPS met or exceeded the benchmark on the PST 10 than did students across the state.


LPS student CMAS scores are fairly steady and following state trends. There are areas of success and areas of concern. We continue to be concerned about the effects of COVID as elementary students progress through the grades. 

Professional Learning Communities provide time for teachers to share best instructional practices. PLCs also provide time for teachers to strategize how to best serve students by name and need academically, socially, and emotionally. 

We are proud of our students and our teachers, as there is much to celebrate in this data.  The significant time and resources focused on math and English language arts is helping us identify some best practices we want to replicate. For example, increased instructional minutes are making a positive impact when implemented through double instructional blocks built into the schedule at some schools. We are hopeful that the addition of instructional minutes districtwide beginning this school year will make a difference for all students. 

We will continue to carefully examine our state assessment math and English language arts scores along with other student performance data to determine gaps and specific areas of improvement. We will continue to focus on how we can better support school leaders and teachers as they dig into their student data and make sense of it. Schools have already begun analyzing this data and are planning accordingly.

“It’s encouraging to see many of our scores return to pre-COVID levels. Our teachers are excellent at pinpointing student needs and have been working incredibly hard to help every student thrive,” said Assistant Superintendent of Learning Services Melissa Cooper. “There is much work yet to be done. We have the right systems in place, such as PLCs and increased instructional time, to set us up for success moving forward.”