Poor, nonfluent students can affect test scores

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Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2013 11:45 pm

The St. Joseph School District increased its Missouri Assessment Program proficiency scores over the last 10 years. However, the local scores haven’t increased at the same rate as the state averages.

There were 32.4 percent of district students in the Proficient and Advanced in communication arts in 2002. The state average, covering the 512 school districts in Missouri, was 30.7 for Proficient and Advanced.

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • GoHawkeyes posted at 4:50 pm on Sun, Feb 3, 2013.

    GoHawkeyes Posts: 1825

    This is sad. The test scores would likely be higher if the teachers didn't have to spend so much time helping the kids who don't speak English or the kids who should have been held back a grade but weren't because of No Child Left Behind. Get rid of the non English speakers (or force them to learn English before they jump the boarder) and hold the stupid kids back and there won't be a problem.

  • LyndonBarry posted at 5:59 pm on Sun, Feb 3, 2013.

    LyndonBarry Posts: 8

    No Child Left Behind has been generally misunderstood, and our school administration's explanations of it have certainly not helped. NCLB did nothing to encourage kids being pushed up through the grades- if anything, it encouraged the opposite.

    This is one of Alonzo's better articles on district performance. Two things were stated very well- teachers are doing one heck of a job. It's district policies set at a much higher level that are falling short. And Rep. Thompson is absolutely correct- you can't measure a district by test scores alone; there are too many variables. The problem is that our district has strived to not measure our district by test scores at all- a problem that hopefully the Board will deal with in their choice of our next superintendent.

  • johnahickman posted at 9:21 pm on Sun, Feb 3, 2013.

    johnahickman Posts: 539

    Its time to take pride in our community and make our schools, our children and the future of our community our highest priority! Our teachers labor tirelessly to do exactly that every single day. Its time we support our teachers with modern facilities throughout the SJSD!

    It’s a vicious cycle. We failed to invest in modern school facilities for 40 yrs and wondered why our business climate suffered and we lost businesses to other communities.

    We still send the poorest kids in the SJSD to the worst facilities then scratch our heads and wonder why they struggle.

    School performance isn't only about facilities - but our failure to make adequate investments in facilities certainly has played a significant role in the increase in students in the free & reduced lunch program – which is a major driver of the performance issue – that can’t be denied!

    Think facilities don't matter? How many of the schools in MO had modern HV/AC systems in 2002 vs 2012? How many schools had classrooms that were of adequate size for the number of students in 2002 vs 2012? What other investments in facilities did other districts in MO make that allowed them to attract business w/good paying jobs to their communities while St. Joe missed out because it failed to invest in its own schools, children and future?

    1 short year ago, the community came together under PACT for SJSD and jointly designed a Facilities Master Plan. It’s up to each of us to make certain it gets implemented within the next 10 yrs, as the community said it wanted. We must make certain the SJSD makes the necessary investments we all want in facilities if we want our community to move forward.

    The SJSD Board is already saying they will ignore the community's plan and wait 8-10 yrs before seeking funding to make progress on the Facilities Master Plan! We've seen how that played out over the last 40 yrs - we can't afford to wait another 10 yrs!

    The key missing metric from this article is the % Free & Reduced Lunches in 2002. Don't know if that is available, but would be interesting to know.

    Thanks for a nice article, Alonzo!

  • SaintJosephian posted at 9:51 pm on Sun, Feb 3, 2013.

    SaintJosephian Posts: 101

    1. Education is not a competition. The people who are not entirely fluent in English are the most in need of education, obviously.

    2. You should probably use the right homonyms when insulting the English skills of any given group. "Jumping the boarder" - it is sad because it could not be a typo, how embarrassing.


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