St. Mary beats La. in LEAP testing

St. Mary Parish schools beat the state average in the growth of mastery scores in LEAP testing released Wednesday.
St. Mary Parish in-creased its mastery LEAP scores by 6 percentage points, from 29 percent scoring mastery in English, math and science in 2015 to 35 percent in 2017.
Statewide, in 2015, 29 percent statewide LEAP test-takers scored mastery and above. In 2017, scores improved statewide by 4 points to 33 percent.
The LEAP test was first implemented for fourth- and eighth-graders in 1999 and has grown to include students from third- to eighth-grade.
The percentage of LEAP test-takers who achieved mastery in 2017 at St. Mary schools:
—At J.S. Aucoin Elementary, 38 percent, down 1 point from 2015 and down 10 points from 2016.
—At Bayou Vista Elementary, 58 percent, up 13 points from 2015 and down 4 points from 2016.
—At Berwick Elementary, 49 percent, up 8 points from 2015 and down 4 points from 2016.
—At Berwick Junior High, 45 percent, up 2 points from 2015 and up 4 from 2016.
—At Centerville High, a school that combines all grades, 32 percent, up 4 points from 2015 and up 1 point from 2016.
—At W.P. Foster Elementary School, 25 percent, up 6 points from 2015 and down 2 points from 2016.
—At Franklin Junior High, 21 percent, down 1 point from 2015 and down 2 points from 2016.
—At LaGrange Elementary, 22 percent, up 7 points from 2015 and down 1 point from 2016.
—At Julia B. Maitland Elementary, 22 percent, down 2 points from 2015 and down 4 points from 2016.
—At Morgan City Junior High, 34 percent, up 4 points from 2015 and down 1 point from 2016.
—At Patterson Junior High, 27 percent, up 5 points from 2015 and up 1 point from 2016.
—At Hattie Watts Elementary, 42 percent, up 12 points from 2015 and down 3 points from 2016.
—At Wyandotte Elementary, 50 percent, up 17 points from 2015 and down 4 points from 2016.
—At M.E. Norman Elementary, 51 percent, up 17 points from 2015 and up 3 points from 2016.
—At B. Edward Boudreaux Elementary, 21 percent, no change from 2015 and down 1 point from 2016.
—At Raintree Elementary, 25 percent, up 8 points from 2015 and down 1 point from 2016.
State Superintendent John White said in a conference call that 2015-17 growth is important because 2015 was the first year that testing for the LEAP reflected national stand-ards.
“We must celebrate our successes, but be candid with our challenges,” White said.
He also said that statewide, English scores are increasing, math scores are decreasing, and science scores remained stagnant.
Since 2015, St. Mary Parish has continuously seen a growth in mastery scores with an 8 percent growth in English, 5 percent growth in math, and 6 percent growth in science.
White said economically disadvantage students and minority students are keeping step with other students but are not closing the achievement gap.
He said the state has a 10-year plan to raise mastery scores to the level of A schools by 2025 and increase ACT scores and graduation rates.
In the 2017-18 school year, short courses will help teachers tailor practices to fit each individual student.
Testing will be limited to less than 2 percent of instruction time, but teachers will have a tool called LEAP 360 with which they can evaluate students against expected standards on the LEAP test.
White also said that the science curriculum will get a complete overhaul across the state.
Science will be improved with more high-quality curriculum and more extensive training of teachers.
Pre-engineering courses will also be piloted in the 2017-18 school year across the state in which students will take eight courses over two years in high school and possibly earn college credit.

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