NWLA schools tout big gains in LEAP assessment scores

Education

DeSoto Parish schools led the state in overall improvement in the percent of students achieving mastery and above in grades 3-8, according to a statement from the school district. (Source: DeSoto Parish Public Schools)

SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Several Northwest Louisiana school districts are touting big improvements in the state’s latest release of Louisiana Educational Assessment Program (LEAP) assessment data.

The 2018-19 LEAP data was released Thursday by the Louisiana Department of Education and includes performance scores and letter grades for every district, along with the statewide average score of 76.1 and letter grade B.

Among the nine NWLA parishes, Bienville, Bossier, DeSoto, and Sabine parishes matched that B statewide average. Caddo, Claiborne, Natchitoches, Red River, and Webster all earned a C.

View the Louisiana Department of Education’s data on district performance scores here.

DeSoto Parish earned the highest district performance score of the NWLA parishes, with an 86.9. The school district also notes that they led the state in overall improvement in the percent of students achieving mastery and above in grades 3-8. When including high school students, the district ranks 2nd overall across the state.

“The hard work of our teachers and administrators was evident as our students improved toward the new goal of mastery,” said Superintendent Clay Corley.

The school district also says DeSoto students showed overall performance growth in the three content areas reported: English, mathematics, and social studies. Science scores will be released at a later time due to a deadline set by the Louisiana Department of Education.

Read the full statement from DeSoto Parish Public Schools here.

Sabine followed DeSoto among the NWLA parishes with a score of 84.4. Bossier Parish scored the third-highest in terms of the overall district performance score in the region. Red River Parish received the lowest overall district performance of the NWLA parishes, with 63.4, followed by Claiborne Parish and Caddo Parish with 66.3 and 67.2, respectively.

Caddo Parish Public Schools pointed to sizable gains in student growth, however.

The results showed Caddo students growing in mathematics, English language arts and social studies performance in alignment with the state average increases on LEAP 2025 assessments. The data released Thursday by the Louisiana Department of Education shows students across Caddo Parish continue to progress year after year across content areas. Caddo grew two percent in students scoring mastery and above in math.

The district noted increases not only in high poverty schools with intensive supports such as those in the Transformation Zone but in some of the state’s highest performing schools including Caddo Middle Magnet and Herndon Magnet. Thursday’s data release comes as the district has received recognition for all-time high graduation rates coupled with growth in student performance on national assessments including the ACT and Advanced Placement exams.

Statement from Caddo Parish Public Schools

Click here to read the full statement from CPSB on the district’s LEAP test performance.

The LEAP 2025 includes assessments of ELA, mathematics, science, and social studies for grades 3-12. Science assessments were field-tested for the 2017-2018 school year as part of a transition to new standards. The tests measure the knowledge and skills contained in the state’s content standards for that particular grade. Student scores are reported on five levels: Unsatisfactory, Approaching Basic, Basic, Mastery, or Advanced. Mastery and above is considered proficient, or ready for the next grade level.

Bossier Parish pointed out that the district hit a milestone with the 2017-18 LEAP performance exam.

The district hit an all-time high of 51-percent of students in grades 3-12 scoring mastery and advanced on the English Language Arts (ELA) portion of the assessment. The percentage of students in grades 3-8 and high school students earning mastery and advanced in math also increased by three-percent, propelling Bossier to lead the northern region in district math scores. When all subjects — ELA, math and social studies — are combined, 43-percent of students scored mastery and above, ranking Bossier the 14th highest performing district in Louisiana. That exceeds the state average by seven points.

Gains were made by subgroups tracked by the state as well, which include the number of African American students scoring mastery+, economically disadvantaged and children with disabilities. Those making the most notable gains were military affiliated students, who showed a three-percent increase in mastery+ across all subjects, and children in foster care, who marked an eight-percent rise in ELA, math and social studies.

Statement from Bossier Parish Schools

Click here for the full statement from Bossier Parish on the district performance in the 2017-18 LEAP performance exam.


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