The Advocate, Baton Rouge, La., on more rigoprous student testing:

May 27

The Advocate, Baton Rouge, La., on more rigoprous student testing:

The good news is that the state's students are doing a bit better on tests, but the bad news is that the tests are going to get harder.

State Education Superintendent John White noted the problem even as the new LEAP and iLEAP test scores were released, showing that 69 percent of students scored basic or above on the key tests. White said students were challenged by more-rigorous writing questions, in particular, as the state begins a transition to tougher standards developed for the nation by the National Governors Association.

Louisiana is one of more than 40 states adopting the so-called "common core" standards of what children should know. Louisiana is phasing in the common core for reading, writing and math this year and next, with new tests slated for spring 2015.

Despite an agitation against a "federal curriculum," the common core standards are a good thing. Louisiana students should be challenged to improve, although there is no question that more-rigorous academic standards will be tougher for schools to meet.

A key component of the common core transition will be support for teachers in teaching the new standards. We agree with Stephanie Desselle, of the Council for a Better Louisiana, that it is vital "state officials and local school boards provide the right support to our teachers and students in making these changes."

In an era where more and more is demanded of schools and teachers, we believe that professional development for teachers must be a priority in efforts to boost student achievement.

The common core need not be an uncommonly difficult challenge for schools that have shown the capacity to rise to a higher bar of accountability for student performance.


St. Mary Now & Franklin Banner-Tribune

Franklin Banner-Tribune
P.O. Box 566, Franklin, LA 70538
Phone: 337-828-3706
Fax: 337-828-2874

Morgan City Daily Review
P.O. Box 948, Morgan City, LA 70381
Phone: 985-384-8370
Fax: 985-384-4255

Follow Us