School board reports higher LEAP scores

St. Mary fourth and eighth-grade students posted achievement gains between spring and summer LEAP and EOC test administrations.

Passing the Louisiana Educational Assessment Program and End-of-Course tests is required for passage to the next grade level or course.

Among St. Mary fourth-grade students, 45 percent attained higher scores in English Language Arts and 61 percent enhanced performance rates in mathematics. Among district eighth-graders participating in LEAP retesting, 44 percent boosted scores in English Language Arts and 64 percent progressed in mathematics.

This summer marks the first time remediation was offered for EOC tests. After that remediation, 88 percent of St. Mary students passed the Algebra 1 EOC test.

District promotional rates have correspondingly increased for fourth-graders to 91 percent after summer retesting, indicating a gain of four percent from initial spring results, Superintendent Dr. Don Aguillard said.

Eighth-grade promotions also have improved with 76 percent meeting the standard, a 10 percent increase over spring testing.

“The district remains committed to exerting every effort to address the wide ranging academic challenges facing today’s students. St. Mary educators are exceptionally dedicated to meeting the needs of every student through examination of student data and application of targeted instructional strategies designed to enhance academic competencies. The district remains committed to raising achievement, reducing the achievement gap, and preparing an increasing number of students to succeed academically,” Aguillard said.

Students are required to attain scores of Approaching Basic and Basic in English Language Arts and math in order to progress to the next grade level, Accountability Manager Robbi Gouaux said.

“According to state policy a small percentage of students have qualified for various state approved overrides that allow students to be placed in the next grade or in the district’s transitional program. The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education added authorization for qualifying eighth graders to enter high school through either the career diploma or Connections program based on specified criteria if they fail to meet promotional standards,” Gouaux explained.

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