By Mike DeNardo

HILADELPHIA (CBS) — While its budget deficit has been making headlines, the Philadelphia School District is pointing to another year of modest test score gains.

Philadelphia scores on the state PSSA test have been inching up for nine years in a row. This year, the low-performing turnaround schools known as “Promise Academies” posted math gains three times better than the district overall. Deputy Superintendent Lee Nunery says it’s evidence that the longer school days and extra supports there are working.

“I think what it does do, is say that the whole idea of reform inside a school, when you put the right combination of leaders and teachers together and change the curriculum and add the extras, is worth the investment,” Nunery says.

Despite the gains, Nunery says the improvement isn’t fast enough. Only 59 percent of students scored “proficient” in math and 52 percent made the grade in reading.

Reported by Mike DeNardo, KYW Newsradio

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