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State LEAP testing starts in less than a month after difficult school year

Updated: Mar. 26, 2021 at 8:03 PM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - In just a few weeks, students across the state will be taking the Louisiana LEAP exams, and that includes students here in Southwest Louisiana whose year has been anything but ordinary.

With testing around the corner, Supervisor of Assessments and Accountability Dielle Barrentine, says they know where students in Calcasieu Parish stand.

“High school failure rate right now, it’s a rate we’ve never seen before. So we know the challenges that we have, but we also are making plans to try to bridge that gap.”

State testing was canceled last year due to the pandemic, but this year, the state is not easing up on testing, despite the challenges our region has had to face.

Nevertheless, Barrentine says as a parish, they recognize those challenges and question the state test’s accuracy when results come out later this year.

“We just are not sure how valid the information will be from the state test, given that they’re designed to be utilized when the students have been in school for a full year. Much less having missed the whole end of last year and having no data from that particular year.”

However, Barrentine says there is one indicator of this year’s tests the school board is looking at closely.

“I think after those results come in and the state is able to look and kind of go through and disseminate those. And look and see, how did the face-to-face students fare versus those that are a CCR student?”

The Calcasieu Parish School Board is planning on summer programs to bridge the educational gap in time for the next school year.

Testing begins for high schoolers first, on April 15.

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