Thursday, July 14, 2016

PARCC results not kind to Mississippi students

The Mississippi Department of Education released the PARCC results and issued the following statement:

MDE Releases Grade 3-8 Results for Tests Aligned to Higher Standards
Scores Establish New Starting Point for Measuring Student Growth

JACKSON, Miss. – The Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) released today results from the first assessments administered in grades 3 through 8 that measured Mississippi’s students’ progress toward the academic goals laid out in the Mississippi College and Career Ready Standards. These standards were designed to ensure students develop the skills and knowledge they need in jobs and in college.  

As anticipated, student performance dropped from previous years’ performance levels in English language arts (ELA) and mathematics. For the 2014-2015 school year, assessments from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) replaced the Mississippi Curriculum Test (MCT2).

Statewide, nearly a third of students in grades 3-8 (30 percent) met or exceeded expectations for English language arts and less than a third of students (26 percent) met or exceeded expectations in mathematics. 

“The PARCC assessments were far more demanding than previous state tests. The level of rigor was much closer to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), and our test results reflected that. These results mark a new starting point for our students. With continued instruction and support, we expect to see test scores to increase over time,” said Dr. Carey Wright, state superintendent of education.

According to PARCC, the students scoring at Level 4 or 5, the top two performance categories, are meeting or exceeding expectations. The scores suggest that students have a thorough understanding of grade-level content and are on the right track to being ready for college-level coursework.  Students scoring at Level 3 are approaching expectations and know a significant amount of content, but may need additional assistance in mastering all aspects of the standards.  Students scoring a Level 1 or 2 need more assistance in learning the content and are in need of greater supports.

Following national trends, about a quarter to a third (23 to 36 percent) of Mississippi students scored at Level 3, which indicates a large number of students are at the cusp of meeting expectations. 

“I am proud of all of the students who performed extremely well on this challenging test and am encouraged that so many others demonstrated the potential to move into the highest two performance levels,” Wright said. “I am especially proud of Mississippi teachers, who worked incredibly hard over the past several years to increase the level of rigor in their classrooms and to help their students reach high academic standards.”

The statewide results from PARCC provide parents and educators information on one measure of determining whether students are learning what they need to learn. When combined with student grades and teacher reports, annual assessments provide important information about student progress.

Like the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), Mississippi assessments now require students to reach a higher bar than on former state tests. As with any change in standards and assessments, there is a period of transition as students adjust to higher expectations.

In past years, there has been a large gap between the percentage of students meeting expectations on Mississippi’s state assessments and the percent achieving proficiency on NAEP tests. NAEP assessments are administered to a random sample of students nationwide in the 4th and 8th grade. 

While previous state tests showed 50 to 70 percent of students meeting expectations, NAEP tests showed proficiency levels were actually in the 20 to 25 percent range. The 2014-2015 PARCC results close the gap between the results of state tests and NAEP.

PARCC Met or Exceeded Expectations
NAEP Proficient
PARCC Met or Exceeded Expectations
NAEP Proficient
Grade 3 Math

Grade 3 ELA

Grade 4 Math
Grade 4 ELA
Grade 5 Math

Grade 5 ELA

Grade 6 Math

Grade 6 ELA

Grade 7 Math

Grade 7 ELA

Grade 8 Math
Grade 8 ELA

Three districts had greater than 45 percent of students scoring Level 4 or higher on math assessments for grades 3-8. Those school districts include Booneville, Madison County and Petal.

Seven districts had greater than 45 percent of students scoring Level 4 or higher on ELA assessments for grades 3-8. Those school districts include Amory, Booneville, Clinton, Madison County, Pass Christian, Petal and Union County.
Dr. Todd English, superintendent of Booneville School District, said his district saw positive results because of the collective effort of the community.

“Everyone worked together to provide the rigor required for our students to be successful. We had tremendous buy in from the students, parents, teachers and administrators,” English said. “The higher standards required higher expectations than normal for all parties involved. We succeeded together.”

Madison County Public Schools superintendent Dr. Ronnie McGehee credited quality teaching and family support for student achievement in Madison.

“We are extremely proud of our students for their outstanding performance on the statewide PARCC assessments. This achievement is a result of teachers and staff who strive daily to create an environment of educational excellence, and to parents who support our efforts,” McGehee said. “Our success in Madison County proves that no matter what the assessment, good teaching wins out!”

The MDE has offered numerous opportunities for professional development to teachers since the standards were adopted five years ago. Wright said that with continued professional development for teachers, students could move up to meeting expectations over time with the proper support and assistance.

“There is no substitute for great teaching. We are committed to continuing our support to teachers to help them further strengthen instruction,” Wright said.

Dr. John R. Kelly, chairman of the Mississippi State Board of Education, said schools need to continue to challenge students so that they can reach their greatest potential.

“I am confident in the ability of all students to meet more challenging academic standards,” Kelly said. “Holding our students to higher standards is the only way our state will achieve better educational outcomes.”

In the 2015-2016 school year, Mississippi will be administering the Mississippi Assessment Program (MAP) – which will replace the PARCC test. MAP will continue to provide meaningful feedback to parents, teachers, and students and let them know students’ progress on the path to college and careers.

“MAP is a Mississippi-developed assessment that is aligned to the same standards for college and careers,” said Dr. J.P. Beaudoin, MDE chief of research and development. “MAP assessments are designed to provide meaningful information to students, teachers and parents about student progress and achievement.”

For more information about the 2014-2015 assessments, parents should visit To view the district- and school-level PARCC results, click here or visit:


Anonymous said...

Just to put it in plain English. Only 1/3 of the kids in Ms. are passing. Now that is something to be proud of. Good work school system.

Anonymous said...

Didn't we drop PARCC after one year?

Anonymous said...

Would be interesting to compare the results of JA and St Andy vs JPS

Anonymous said...

It will never change until this state gets priorities in order. Other states who have invested in education have a better educated population and they are the state that attract business and industry.

Anonymous said...

I think this is the saddest situation in the US. If Mississippi had real leadership there would be a reckoning. It takes courage to fire public employees who fail this much; these schools need a complete intervention starting at the top. I'm tired of living in #50. Tired of it. We are a complete and utter embarrassment to the nation. I hope you're listening Pheel and Tater because it's happening on your watch.

Kansas Football Scoop said...

6:02- MS spends at least half our general fund on education. Show me what the other states that 'invest in education' spend per capita.

Anonymous said...

To 7:23, ..."fire public employees who fail this much..." Please read again the comments from the school administrators. It is not an excuse but a reality that it takes more than a team of great teachers. Children come to school hungry, sleepy, scared, angry, etc because their parents are neglecting and/or abusing them. Many citizens never attend ANY school programs, games, or meetings. If we fire teachers who fail to move students who arrived in August academically 2-3 grade levels below his/her current grade, MS will have an even greater teacher shortage. That's probably 1/4 of the students. Remove those kids from custody of those parents and place them in our foster care system, made famous by the NY Times, to suffer more neglect and abuse? Plus can MS afford to pay for 1/4 kids in that system? Should we also publicly shame citizens who don't support schools by at least attending events or meetings? Have you ever volunteered at a school AFTER your children and grandchildren were adults? PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE stop blaming ONLY "bad" teachers because trust and believe MS's teacher evaluation is the reason for the edit of bad, good, AND excellent teachers.

Heddy-Dale Matthias, MD said...

Send the results and bills for failing schools to the Southern Poverty Law Center and Mr. James Sowell at Millsaps.

Anonymous said...

So sad. This is the result of sorry parents. The Great Socciety also plays a major role. Enslave the population by giving them free stuff. No responsibility, no self reliance. Idle hands are the devils workshop.

Anonymous said...

7:47, the problem is that a very high % of the money spent on education does not have a single thing to do with education. Admin costs far out reach the amount used on education. Remember Ms. has many different little kingdoms where the royalty is allowed first chance at any monies given to education. Each year the royal families grow and need more of the money.
The fact that Ms. is #50 in education is the biggest reason it will remain #50. Keeping the population ignorant will assure the royal families get their larger share of education money. We are just too dumb to know better.

Anonymous said...

5:45 I think your response to my alarming statement (7:23) is written well and you do make some very good points. I guess I'm most frustrated by the leadership overall in Mississippi. They can certainly begin to zero in to those officials and teachers who are so inept that they must be either retrained or fired. If the governor can spend his time on Confederate Day and protecting cake-bakers he can certainly get his staff more focused on educational accountability. How about this? Let's put together a comprehensive test that one must pass in order to run for any legislative office in Mississippi? This would also apply to anyone who is currently in those seats. If they're not educated why are they making decisions about Mississippi's education system?

Anonymous said...

To answer the question about comparison with the private schools I do have the stats for St. Andrews grad class of '16. Average ACT score is 29. 51% scored 30 or higher. 3 scored a perfect 36. 16% of the class recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Program. 11% were National Merit Finalists. Received more than $10 million in college scholarship offers. 44 graduates will attend colleges in 26 states and 57% of those are out-of-state. The school is currently ranked #18 of the Top 100 Private Day Schools in the US. Most of these kids and their teachers (and parents) work hard to succeed.

Anonymous said...

And you can get the exact same results "for free" right down the road at Madison Central and for many of the same reasons. Good teachers, good parental involvement, students who care (yeah some are made to but that's where parenting comes in), and pretty good administrators. You don't have to pay a fortune to succeed. Or, you can pay a fortune. That's completely up to you. Public schools do succeed given the right set of circumstances. Pretty much without exception, if you find a good surrounding community you'll find a good school. Conversely, if the surrounding community is for crap the local schools will be much the same. Yeah, yeah, I know all about the one in a million exception they plaster on NBC once every six months, but extremely rare exceptions just aren't reliable enough to count on obviously enough.

Anonymous said...

In 2013 the following per pupil spending was reported:

TX - $8,299
NC - $8,390
MS - $8,130

TX and NC rank much higher in overall student achievement than MS.

The report just released states that less than a third can read or write at grade level. And sadly only a fourth can do basic math.

Have we ever considered the possibility that we have a bunch of dumb urchins? Hard to blame this on "spending".

Anonymous said...

Thank goodness for our $300K/year MDE Superintendent and that awesome Board of Education. Without them only 10% of our kids could read or write! Keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

10:49, You could be right. Look at the breeding stock. Even an intelligent child can not learn much as long as their early years are spent in a place, notice I didn't say home, that discourages intelligence. By the time they get school age they have already formed what they will become. Sadly, most will be like their parents, even though they may never know who that might be.

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Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

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Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

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This is definitely a Beaver production.

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If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

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