Minden Press-Herald

Oct 01st

School scores are up

BUTCH_WILLIAMSTest scores improved this year for Webster Parish students, and the Webster Parish School Board has noticed.

"Whenever test scores come in, it seems we all sit in front of the computer for about three straight days looking at how we did," Superintendent W.W. "Butch" Williams said. "We compare scores from previous years and see where we have improved and where we need to improve."

Williams said the parish as a whole earned a 651-point increase in scale scores this year.

Scale scores are numeric representations of a student's achievement on the LEAP, iLEAP and GEE. Scale scores are used to determine what level a student has scored among the five achievement levels possible. The levels possible are Advanced, Mastery, Basic, Approaching Basic and Unsatisfactory.

"That is an unbelievable increase in scale scores," he said. "We made the Louisiana Department of Education website, and we really feel like we have things going in the right direction and hope to continue to do so."

Williams said Webster Parish is among the top seven highest ranking districts in the state, based on gains in the percentage of students performing at Basic and above on spring testing from 2010 to 2011

"I am very pleased and excited about this year's scores," Williams said. "We had some very good scores all the way around."

The number of students in Webster Parish to score Mastery or Advanced increased over last year. At the same time, there was a decrease in unsatisfactory scores.

According to the state department of education website, statewide testing is a key component of Louisiana's Accountability System.

Each year, students in grades 3-11 participate in state assessments. The state assessments are based on Grade-Level Expectations, which reflect the knowledge and skills students should have acquired at the time of testing.

However, freshmen entering high school in the 2010-11 school year and thereafter will not take the GEE. These students must pass three End-of-Course (EOC) tests in the following categories: English II or English III, Algebra I or Geometry and Biology or American History. Thus, the EOC tests will replace the GEE for graduation purposes.

Students can score one of four achievement levels on the End-of-Course exams: Excellent, Good, Fair and Needs Improvement.

Individual student scores were sent home with students in the spring. Overall parish and school scores and additional information are available online at http://www.doe.state.la.us/.






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