QualityEducation203.org annually compares Naperville Community Unit School District 203's composite ACT score and operational expenditures to those of the highest performing public school districts in the Chicagoland area. The results, once again, demonstrate the academic excellence of District 203 schools and the fiscally sound manner in which they are operated. Year in and year out, the return on our community's educational investment is substantial.
With the all the changes to how Illinois reports academic performance, understanding what this year’s numbers represent is challenging. The following is a detailed explanation of the changes, D203’s scores, and what is coming in the future. It is wise to keep in mind that test results are subjective, in and of themselves, and interpretations of test scores are even more so.
The creation of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) has, for the first time, produced a set of de-facto national instructional standards in English and Math for grades K-12 that represent, arguably, the most significant education reform in generations. Following a few years behind the CCSS, are the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) which were introduced recently. Illinois adopted the NGSS standards in February 2014, one of 11 states that have adopted them so far.
The importance of District 203 successfully implementing the Common Core State Standards cannot be overstated; it has to be this district’s number one priority. The good news is D203’s curriculum already contains many concepts contained in the Common Core such as our inquiry based learning model that encourages students to become critical thinkers and collaborative workers, and thus is well positioned to embrace the promise that the Common Core represents.