TUHS has been improving since 2005

Taft Union High School has beat its government-mandated API goals again, Superintendent Blanca Cavazos announced.

The state released the scores last week.

The state's target Academic Performance Index score for Taft was to increase five points from 758 to 763. Taft increased by eight points to 766. Taft's scores have improved steadily from 633 in 2005.

"I was so excited about how well the high school did. It's a testament to the students and the staff to keep the focus on academics in spite of everything that happened last (school) year (the school shooting Jan. 10)," Cavazos praised.

"The California High School Exit Exam is a factor in the score and we did really well on the CAHSEE. So that was a good indication that we would do well on the STAR test scores," she added. "I'm very proud."

The API measures academic performance and growth gleaned from student scores on the STAR (Standardized Testing And Reporting) test and the California High School Exit Exam, among other measures.

The school met four out of five subgroups in its federal API goals as mandated by No Child Left Behind.

The target for black or African-American students was a growth of five points and Taft improved by eight. The target growth for socioeconomically disadvantaged students was five and Taft grew by 18.The target growth for Hispanic or Latino students was five points and Taft grew by 19. The growth target for English learners was five and Taft grew by a phenomenal 48 points. The target growth rate for white students was five and Taft improved by four points, just missing the mark by one point.

Schools that continually fail to make their overall API goal run the risk of government sanctions and, without improvement, eventual government takeover.