Calcasieu Parish Schools outperform state average in LEAP testing scores

Published: Aug. 2, 2023 at 5:25 PM CDT
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CALCASIEU PARISH, La. (KPLC) - ‘Louisiana Comeback’ is what the State Department of Education is calling its presentation for the LEAP test score results.

The state’s overall ranking in the country has improved from 46 to 42, and within the state, Calcasieu Parish was recognized as one of the top ten districts in growth.

Starting the school year on a high.

“The testing season is just a snapshot of what goes on all year long in the classroom,” Jason VanMetre, Calcasieu Parish School Board chief academic officer said.

VanMetre said the district is proud that scores have been increasing and surpassing pre-pandemic results.

“One of the things that data coming out allows us to do is really focus on the schools that may need a little bit of extra help, need a little extra attention and also give some kudos to the folks that really knocked it out of the park,” VanMetre said.

The elementary schools in the parish that show the highest growth are: Gillis Elementary with 10 percent growth, and M.J. Kaufman and Prien Lake Elementary both with nine percent growth.

Parish middle schools with growth of five percent are W.W. Lews Middle, Molo Middle, Moss Bluff Middle, and S.J. Welsh Middle.

The top performing high schools are DeQuincy with ten percent and Sulphur with five percent growth.

“It really gives an indication of how hard our teachers are working, how hard our kids are working,” VanMetre said.

Helping young minds learn and develop can often take a village. VanMetre said helping shape these students goes beyond the educators themselves.

“So you’ve got the bus driver that makes sure the kids get there on time every day, and the cafeteria worker who makes sure that we got a healthy meal for our kids, and even something like the tech department that are making sure we have internet making sure we can test,” VanMetre said.

Kicking off this new school year, he said CPSB hopes to continue on this track.

“We’ve got to remember that test scores are important, but they’re just an indication of what that kid learned,” VanMetre said. “And what that kid learned is going to be what carries them out into the world and makes them better citizens. So, that’s what we’re trying to do every day.”

To view all test scores from Southwest Louisiana, CLICK HERE.