Wednesday, May 22, 2019

75% of 3rd-Graders Meet New Reading Standards

MDE issued the following press release: 

Statewide, three out of four students met the higher bar for the 3rd Grade Reading Assessment on their first try, continuing the trend of improved reading skills among 3rd graders since Mississippi implemented the Literacy-Based Promotion Act.

The Literacy-Based Promotion Act (LBPA) requires 3rd graders to pass a reading assessment to qualify for promotion to 4th grade. An amendment to the law in 2016 raised reading-level expectations starting in the 2018-19 school year, requiring 3rd graders to score at level 3 or higher on the reading portion of the Mississippi Academic Assessment Program (MAAP) English Language Arts (ELA) assessment.

Statewide, 74.5% (26,057) of 3rd graders met the higher bar. The 25.5% (8,941) of students who did not pass have two opportunities to retest before the start of the new school year.

“This year’s assessment is a new beginning because the passing score has been raised one level to move closer to measuring proficiency,” said Dr. Carey Wright, state superintendent of education. “Students need strong reading skills in order to learn other school subjects, such as science, social studies, writing and even math. I am proud of all of the students, teachers, school leaders and parents who have worked hard to help students become competent readers by the end of 3rd grade.”

In previous years, the law required 3rd graders to score above the “lowest achievement level.” Under the lower standard, the initial passing rate increased from 85% in 2015 to 93.2% in 2018. Students scoring at level 3 or higher has also increased each year, rising from 69.6% in 2017, to 73.8% in 2018, and to 74.5% in 2019.

Level 3 indicates a student is approaching grade-level expectations. Level 4 means a student has mastered grade-level reading standards.

This year’s statewide results also show:

More than half of schools (214) met or exceeded the state’s average pass rate of 74.5%
94 (22.8%) schools had at least 85% of students meet or exceed the passing score
Among all school districts, the percentage of students meeting or exceeding the higher bar on the test ranged from a high of 94.1% to a low of 32.4%

The LBPA requires that students who do not pass the 3rd Grade Reading Assessment be retained in 3rd grade, unless the student meets the good cause exemptions specified in the law. Exemptions apply to certain students with disabilities, students learning English or students who have been previously retained. Local school districts determine which of their students who did not pass qualify for one of the good cause exemptions for promotion to 4th grade. The law requires schools to provide intensive reading intervention services to students retained in the 3rd grade and to students promoted to 4th grade with a good cause exemption.

“Literacy must remain a major focus in pre-K through 3rd grade to help students build the foundational reading skills they need to be successful throughout school,” Wright said. “As we raise expectations for students, we must do all that we can to help them meet higher academic standards.”

In 3rd grade, students begin to make the transition from learning to read to reading to learn. If they are unsuccessful, they will have difficulty understanding grade-level reading material and are at risk of falling further behind eachyear.

The Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) has assigned 80 literacy coaches to 182 schools throughout the state where data show students struggle the most with reading. Literacy coaches work with teachers to help them become more effective teachers of reading.

In June, the MDE will announce which schools that applied will be awarded grants to run summer reading camps. Schools were preliminarily notified last week of their selection for the reading camp grant. For information about summer reading programs, contact local school districts.

School- and district-level passing rates for the first administration of the 3rd Grade Reading Assessment are posted on the Mississippi Department of Education website.

Kingfish note: Here are the top ten and local school districts.

Top Ten
Chickasaw County (94%)
Newton County (92.5%)
Madison County (91.5%)
New Albany (89%)
Petal (89%)
Long Beach (89%)
Pearl (88%)
Clinton (88%)
Oxford (88%)
Choctaw County (88%)

Local School Districts
Canton: 72%
Clinton: 88%
Hinds County: 67%
 JPS: 64%
Madison County: 91.5%
Pearl: 89%
Rankin County: 83.5%

Desoto: 77%


Anonymous said...

Alternate Headline-

25% of Third Graders Can't Read

Anonymous said...

In Yazoo City 32.4% passed ????? Hell they could do that well in Tijuana .

Anonymous said...

Is being behind the other tri-county districts (excluding the dumpster fires of JPS/Hinds) the new definition of great to best?

Anonymous said...

Jackson should be improving quickly when that 1% additional (tourist) sales tax really gets cranked up.

Anonymous said...

11:50am--Get a life. Expectations are increasing and results are improving and all you can be is a Debbie Downer. Way to go teachers and 3rd graders for upping your game (and up yours 11:50am).

Anonymous said...

Kind of disappointed in Rankin County’s score. Great to Good is a perfect analogy.

Anonymous said...

What percentage of the kids who passed attended preschool/ Head Start? What about the percentage who didn't pass?Universal pre-K is not the answer.

Another side of the same coin - What percentage of the kids who passed have no father in the home? How about the kids who didn't pass? An intact,involved family is the answer.

Anonymous said...

12:29, if a manufacturing plant had a failure rate of 25%, all of management would be fired and replaced. There are good school districts across MS that do not tolerate mediocrity, much less outright failure. The schools that have failed these children need to beheld accountable, including the overpaid/under-performing state superintendent.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't be surprised if they deliberately raised these standards knowing full well how many wouldn't pass, with the hidden agenda to justify universal kindergarten. Now they can claim the crisis, and railroad funding. That's how Mississippi leadership rolls.....and most everyone's too stupid to vote for anyone different....only who's promoted in the local media.

Ophelia said...

That is possibly good news, unless the “new” standard is a lowered bar.

Anonymous said...

Go, Chickasaw County! Home of Attorney General Jim Hood.

Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to see how well Mississippi's private school 3rd graders would do on this same test. I would think the privates would be at 96%+.

Anonymous said...

@11:50 is a headline writer for C/L. That's the way they presented this.

Anonymous said...

It is just a matter of time before this is called racist and discontinued. All of the worst schools are majority black. So the system must be racially profiling.

Anonymous said...

Think again 2:48, their are some great private schools but the 5th graders in most of these academy schools couldn't pass it.

Anonymous said...

@2:24 Ophelia, the bar was lowered a long time ago.....they aren't even required to go to class anymore. The power brokers just want more money pumped into "education" so they can chisel more away.

Anonymous said...

1:59, interesting analogy, but worthless. The manufacturing management hires it's employees. The teachers don't get to select their students.

I'm not into defending our poorly performing public schools in this state, but I am also not into making unreasonable comparisons.

I am into congratulating those that are improving, and these numbers overall -along with the fact that the state has established this bar - is worthy of recognition.

Anonymous said...

So in 2018, Level 2 was passing. Level 2 is below grade level. 93.8% of 3rd graders passed.

In 2019, they increased passing to Level 3, which is basically grade level. Less than 75% passed.

Almost 9000 3rd graders face being held back. Which is probably best if they can't read. But this old codger thinks Mississippi will Mississippi and change the passing mark back to Level 2.

Anonymous said...

@1:59–so which private school did you go to? Or were you home schooled? Drawing comparisons between educating children and manufacturing products is just asinine and shows ignorance of how it works. This is an improvement and it doesn’t fit your narrative so you find something to complain about. Good grief.

Anonymous said...

PhilBilly and Lackey Laurie: How’s that “Better Together” looking? Not so good...not so good.

Anonymous said...

1:59–Lemme get this straight. Kids and widgets are the same so manufacturing and teaching is the same thing?. I bet you think kids should be beat into submission until they act like materials on the line and score 100%. Mississippi has improved and you want to give its leader a pay cut? I thought you were making a business case but that doesn’t make any kind of sense.

Anonymous said...

For 2:38pm - It would be more interesting to see how well Mississippi's private schools would do if they had to teach all children that lived within a certain radius of the school, rather than only the select children of educated, involved parents of a certain economic level that allows them to afford tuition.

Anonymous said...

Way to go Casey with 92.6% pass rate and Obama Magnet with better than 95% pass rate.

Anonymous said...

There is a cost to all this.

In many districts, bright kids who could ace this test on the first day of school waste about two months drilling it over and over again, instead of moving on to new material.

It's not unsolvable: allowing for greater ability-based separation in early grades could help. Let the smart kids take advanced classes, like you do later on.

But absent some affirmative correction, standardized tests tend to produce standardized students. The weakest kids get pulled up a bit, while the strongest (i.e., those with the greatest potential to help MS economically) get pulled down.

Anonymous said...

"Kind of disappointed in Rankin County’s score. Great to Good is a perfect analogy."

You had to temper expectations for Rankin. You have relatively affluent areas for MS (Flowood/Brandon), to dirt poor areas (Pelehatichie/Pisgah) and the in-between (Florence/Richland). Better to look at individual schools or at least zones.

Anonymous said...

2:24/4:22 The Legislature passed a bill to do this. It is the law. Yes, they can go back and lower it but that is very unlikely. The kids that failed get two more times this summer to pass or its is redo 3rd grade. This is good education policy. No more social promotions.

Anonymous said...

5:02 You nailed it. This was called CBOK back in the day with Jackson schools. AP classes don't help until high school.

Anonymous said...

Good work to Gov Bryant, the Legislature, and MDE. But the real credit goes to the parents, teachers, and students. We keep raising our expectations and you keep meeting/exceeding them. Can we all agree on that?

Anonymous said...

This is one of the most progressive measures Mississippi ever has taken in the area of public education and we ought to applaud the results even though there is much work to be done. There are thousands of kids in this state who go home to dire situations where books and reading are completely foreign and who have no educational support outside what they receive at school. We cannot wait until they are in high school to start addressing their academic failures. This requirement mandates corrective action when it can still do some good, and it will do lots of good. The word is getting around that this is serious business and nobody wants to flunk. Results will get better!

Anonymous said...

Yeah great work alright just like with the prison system: it's real easy to pass laws mandating that kids can read by third grade, yet we have the lowest paid teachers,you really think they care, most could get in the management program at a Dollar General and they would make more money in 6 months than a teacher. Just like a prison guard, a good waiter can make $500 in 25-30 hours. Down in South Miss. Bars and Restaurants are guaranteeing these pay scales or do I want to get spit on every day.

Anonymous said...

To an earlier poster:

Level 4 is grade level

Level 3 is approaching grade level

Level 2 is one level above awful

Level 1 is awful

Fire Carey Wright Yesterday If Not Sooner.. said...

A man with his feet in a bucket of ice-water and his head in a 400 degree oven, is, on average, comfortable.

Statewide averages are totally meaningless. When 66% of the kids in Yazoo City cannot read, what the hell good is a 74% statewide 'passing' average?

It's also true that many patients with terminal cancer have excellent vision. Average that.

Out In The Real World.. said...

4:11 - The comparison you didn't like is 100% accurate.

It's true that in manufacturing, the business gets to hire its employees and schools don't get to choose their students.

But, what you fail to acknowledge (and probably don't even know) is that in manufacturing, if the product failure rate remained at 25% for more than a month, employees up and down the reporting line would be terminated. Teachers are rarely, if ever, terminated for poor performance. And, they, like you, probably continue to blame the failure rate on the students that they 'didn't get to choose'.

Anonymous said...

"....we ought to applaud the results even though there is much work to be done."

100 percent chance that was written by an employee at the State Education Department, perhaps by the highest paid state superintendent in the United States.

"We have much work to do", is always their code talk for 'Cut us some slack here...we'll take another look at this in a year. We've got focus groups working on PERS calculations right now'.

Anonymous said...

10:52–Yes. I 100% think the great majority of teachers In fact do care which is more than I can say for your heartless self. If you can’t show intelligence than at least show respect.

Anonymous said...

Lets show respect to the teachers, Pay them!

Anonymous said...

Why is it that Lanier HS during the 1950's had some of the highest test score results in the entire state? National merit finalist and true scholars. This isn't a race issue this isn't a funding issue as you already know JPS has more money per student than any district in the entire state. This is a culture issue and a single parent household issue. I do live in Jackson and my kids don't use the public schools. My 3 sons go to a private school that is much more diverse than the crappy JPS schools. Also minority students score higher at other districts so keep race out of this.

Anonymous said...

Both of my parents are retired public school teachers. I do support public school teachers although tenure is one of the reasons it's hard to rid of bad ineffective teachers. If we want best results we must pay teachers based on performance rather than just being there for certain number of years. Not an issue of pay

Anonymous said...

All those brilliant people who reveal the real culprit, single parent "homes" and a culture of dependence, are sure damn good at throwing the whole thing under the bus. But what the hell can the schools do about single parent homes and teenagers having babies? Like a hospital they have to treat the people in the condition they arrive. This is an effort to move those people to take their shortcomings more seriously, and it's showing progress. What do these critics suggest? Shutting down their schools and sending the failing 3rd graders straight to prison?

Kingfish said...

Good point. Some schools, such as the KIPP charters in Helena, are having longer school days. Got to start doing that in elementary school. They also have enrichment saturdays where the kids can come up to the school as well. Give those kids some damn structure.

Anonymous said...

Charter schools in city of Jackson are doing very well on achieving high reading levels. Of course those students were behind at first due to attending JPS & they developed quickly at charter schools. Charter schools focus on academics rather than administration pay raises. Also longer school days as well as weekend projects.

PittPanther said...

KF, to be to honest I don't know how you make up for the early years where these kids weren't being read to by their parents. But you're right, longer school days, plus weekends. Get as close to a boarding school environment as possible, take the kids away from their weak parents as much as possible.

But it's only a matter of time before Republicans complain about the cost and make cuts. Goodbye longer hours, goodbye weekends.

Anonymous said...

Tater has been running this state, (Phil is the same fixture on the wall that he was when Barbour took over)
I say it's time to fire him before this gets worse.

Anonymous said...

Look at Dr. Ben carson... like him or not his story is amazing. Single parent household in inner city Detroit his m9m worked 2 or 3 jobs and couldn't even read he and his brother both became very successful adults...

Anonymous said...

2:28 His story is amazing, no question, but for most people his background is a recipe for disaster, not success. His story shows that there is still hope. A rose will sometimes grow through concrete, but it is not a good way to grow roses.

Anonymous said...

Right on! 'Longer School Days'. That's exactly what the single- parent-Baby-Mama wants....some agency or group to baby sit another two or three hours out of every day. NO! That is NOT the damned solution. That does nothing more than provide an incentive for more dependence on the government! Can't believe Kingfish advocates that.

I just saw a request (in search of) on Facebook yesterday and the woman asked "Are there any free programs for kids out for the summer?" Obviously code for "Who gone keep these kids now that school be out?"

Anonymous said...

I sure would not want him operating on me or mine, the guy can't stop blinking.

Anonymous said...

Advanced 3rd graders wasted almost an entire year. Many kids started the school year at 4 and 5 on their standardized tests for reading and math. They had to sit through an entire year of it, with multiple deep drill days/weeks tailored specifically to passing this test that they could pass the day they walked throough the classroom door.

Standardized tests hold higher achieving students back. Schools need to separate classes based on ability. Teach the better students more, provide the lesser students with the tools they need to become average or above average, and quit worrying about being fair and equal when not everyone is in fact equally capable.

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Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

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).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

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.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

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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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