Arizona Daily Star / File

Only about one-third of Arizona students earned passing scores on the new AzMERIT test last year, results released Monday show.

Officials have previously warned that in the first administration of the new test, scores would likely be far lower than usual due to higher expectations.

Pima County students had a similar passing rate to the statewide average, showing about one-third passed the math and English language arts assessments.

Only seven percent of Pima County students scored highly proficient on the English language arts portion of the test and 10 percent fell into that category in math.

About 4-in-10 students — 43 percent and 41 percent – scored minimally proficient, the lowest level in the assessment.

Tucson’s two largest school districts, TUSD and Sunnyside, respectively, had the lowest percentage of students passing the math and English tests.

TUSD, which serves more than 48,000 students, had 25 percent passing math and 28 percent passing English language arts.

Sunnyside’s performance was the lowest of Tucson’s nine major school districts. Only 16 percent of its nearly 17,000 students passed.

The highest performing Tucson district was Catalina Foothills. Some 63 percent of its students passed both sections of the test – well above the state average.

The Tanque Verde and Vail school districts, which traditionally join Catalina Foothills as top performers, trailed closely behind.

Tanque Verde had the second highest English language arts performance with 52 percent of students passing and Vail had the second highest math performance with 58 percent of students passing.

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