Multari

'We're proud of our exit exam rate, but we're even more proud of our graduation and matriculation rates,' said School board member Ellen Multari. (Tim Berger / Staff Photographer)

An overwhelming majority of La Cañada High School 10th-graders passed the state high school exit exam in 2011-12, keeping pace with the strong results from the district in previous years.

Ninety-eight percent of sophomores passed both the English and mathematics sections of the California High School Exit Exams, according to a California Department of Education report released Wednesday.

The test is offered to 10th-graders every March. Students who do not pass in their sophomore years have several opportunities to retake the test in their junior and senior years.

During the 2011-12 school year, 369 of 376 10th-graders passed the math test, while 372 of 378 10th-graders passed the English test.

Lindi Dreibelbis, the district's director of assessment, research and consolidated programs, said local students historically have a 98% pass rate.

“La Cañada's CAHSEE performance has always been outstanding,” Dreibelbis said.

School board member Ellen Multari said the district's success with the exit exam goes hand in hand with an even more important statistic — the number of students who graduate.

“We're proud of our exit exam rate, but we're even more proud of our graduation and matriculation rates,” she said.

La Cañada High School routinely has a graduation rate of 98% or higher.

The results included perfect performances by students designated as English learners — those who typically speak a language other than English at home — and those formerly categorized as English learners.

All nine English learners passed the tests, Dreibelbis said, as did the 22 students who previously held that designation.

“We are always impressed with how students do on this test, no matter how they're classified,” Dreibelbis said.