Friday, September 24, 2021

Surprise: Test Scores Fall

 The Mississippi Department of Education issued the following statement.

  The Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) released today statewide results from the 2020-21 Mississippi Academic Assessment Program (MAAP), which provide the first statewide measure of student performance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the first time since MAAP tests were first administered in 2016, student proficiency decreased in mathematics and English Language Arts (ELA). Students were last tested in 2019 and reached an all-time high for proficiency in mathematics and ELA. 





Mathematics Proficiency




ELA Proficiency





 Statewide proficiency levels fell in all grades except grade 8 ELA, which increased 0.1% (35.6%) since 2019 (35.5%).

MAAP measures students’ progress toward academic goals that equip them with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in college and the workforce. Mississippi teachers helped develop MAAP tests, which align with the learning goals for Mississippi classrooms. MAAP measures student performance in ELA and mathematics in grades 3-8 and in high school English II and Algebra I.

“The disruption and stress caused by COVID-19 has had an impact on student performance in every state in the country and the impact has been more marked in mathematics than in English Language Arts,” said Dr. Carey Wright, state superintendent of education. “I am proud of the way Mississippi students, families, teachers and school leaders persevered through the most challenging school year of their lives.”

Students had their school year cut short in spring 2020 when the pandemic shut down school buildings in Mississippi and the United States. Though most Mississippi students had access to in-person learning most of the 2020-21 school year, hybrid learning, quarantining and numerous weather-related school building closures created obstacles to teaching and learning.

The MDE provided districts pandemic-related flexibilities to administer the assessments. Schools provided safe testing environments to all students including full-time virtual learners who took assessments at schools. The overall participation rate for assessments was 96.9%, close to the 98%-99% rates of previous years.

Due to COVID disruptions, grade 3 students were not required to meet a passing score on the reading assessment to be promoted to grade 4. Students still had to meet all other district requirements for promotion. Students who took required end-of-course high school assessments including Algebra I, English II, Biology and U.S. History were not required to meet a passing score.

“This year’s statewide assessments provide valuable information about the impact of the pandemic on learning and will help identify where accelerated learning opportunities for students are most needed,” Wright said.

Though overall statewide proficiency levels dropped, proficiency levels did not drop in every grade, subject and school.

Notably, Ocean Springs School District improved its districtwide ELA proficiency level since 2019.

“For our students to show continued growth and improved proficiency during such a difficult time in their lives is such an outstanding accomplishment,” said Dr. Bonita Coleman, superintendent of Ocean Spring School District (OSSD).

“Continuing the learning path for all of our students and ensuring no student's learning is negatively impacted during this unprecedented time has been of the utmost priority for OSSD. We are thankful for all of our dedicated educators and students who helped ensure a worldwide pandemic did not stand in the way of our continued progress.”

Pre-pandemic, statewide student proficiency rates increased every year since MAAP tests were first administered. By 2019, Mississippi had become a national leader in education because students were making faster progress than nearly every other state. Several factors contributed to the steady rise in student achievement including the implementation of higher academic standards and statewide support to teachers to help students reach higher standards. The effective implementation of several education reform laws and policies that developed or strengthened early childhood education, literacy instruction, school and district accountability, and advanced learning opportunities for high school students.

“This year establishes a new baseline for statewide assessments,” Wright said. “As the world moves to recover from the pandemic, I am confident Mississippi students will progress just as rapidly as they did before.”

2020-21 District and school-level assessment results

2018-19 District and school-level assessment results



Anonymous said...

Obviously we need to give the fat ass, Twinkie eating administrators a raise!

Anonymous said...

i didn't read the entire article, and i'll admit it, i stopped reading after;

"Students were last tested in 2019 and reached an all-time high for proficiency in mathematics and ELA,"

and then saw the chart below that shows math proficiency of 47.4% and english proficiency of 41.6% for 2019. those were the high. the high. think about that for a minute; less than half of the students were proficient in math and english at the high point. and now, barely a third are proficient at math and english.

Anonymous said...

That shouldn't surprise anyone. Free food is the only thing that keeps many kids in school. Now that the schools will deliver the free food to their homes, or where they stays, they don't even have to act like they are learning.

Anonymous said...

what do we expect? time to hire more administators and consultants.

public schools failing in the state that usually occupies slot 50 of 50 for education. NOT NEWS.

Anonymous said...

What are the national math and English proficiency rates? Without these numbers, these returns are meaningless.

Unknown said...

That should put to rest remote "learning", but I bet it won't. A lot of kids just fucked off last year when doing remote "learning". My wife was bitching about it last year when doing home visits all last year.

Anonymous said...

Gosh, if they aren't getting all Superiors, we need to bring in the Ole Miss Athletic Department to find some "tutors." Heck, KF probably knows some LSU "academic assistance" folks who can help, too.

I hate when the educators have standards and don't just insist they are superior because they inherited some money and lease a Range Rover. Gosh, what's the small 'Sip world coming to?

Anonymous said...

Blame it on Fauci with his "the sky is falling" dogma.

Anonymous said...

Dumb students. Dumb parent(s). Dumb teachers.

Anonymous said...

What accounts for the difference between students who achieve/maintain proficiency in math and language skills and those who have fallen behind?

Parents. Note the use of the plural form - not one parent but both parents.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry. I'm sure the parents will hunker down and start doing a better job at home.

Anonymous said...

If you aren’t an educator, or don’t know one personally, you have absolutely NO IDEA how bad it is. The majority of students are currently performing 1-2 grade levels behind. The administrators and parents act like it’s the teachers’ faults, but it’s 100% the fault of distance learning, passing ALL students due to COVID, and poor parent involvement in education. Now, the teachers are being pushed to “fix it” while simultaneously teaching and testing their current grade level’s demanding standards WHILE juggling an increasing number of disciplinary issues (mostly due to terrible parenting.)

You will see a MUCH LARGER teacher shortage in the next few years. It will have ZERO to do with salary and EVERYTHING to do with the stress of trying to achieve the impossible. I personally know several teachers planning to outright leave the profession at the end of this school year. I know even more planning to leave the state due to lack of planning and accountability from leadership. They have friends in other states and the environment is COMPLETELY different. It’s no longer about teaching students. It’s about achieving impossible standards without the students having ANY foundation. It’s about the stress of not being able to meet the administrators’ demands because the kids read two grade levels behind with ZERO comprehension skills. It’s about kids who missed five 9-weeks of classroom learning and have returned this year still thinking like they did two grade levels ago. It’s about teachers being micromanaged to resolve problems they didn’t create.

The MDE director should be spending her time with teachers trying to understand the shit show she has created versus sharing stats showing our students are failing. The teachers knew this last fall when they were dealt kids who didn’t finish the previous year… and it continued to snowball last year.

@12:54p- The reality with those low-performing students is that they had crappy parents/home life before COVID, and they continue to live in the same environment. The demands of education cannot be met in the classroom alone. The students that are succeeding have parents who are invested in their education. You’ll find that most all of the failing students have parents who are low performing themselves, or parents who think it’s the schools’ job to teach their kid. In the end, the student loses because their parents weren’t invested in their lives and education.

Anonymous said...

"The Mississippi Department of Education issued the following statement.


"By 2019, Mississippi had become a national leader in education because students were making faster progress than nearly every other state."

Going from horrifying test results to slightly-less horrifying test results - but doing so very quickly - makes Mississippi "a national leader in education"...? It does sound like there is quite a proficiency deficiency. It might be quite the data point to test the administrators and see how quickly they went from staggering incompetence to absolute incompetence.

It is long past time to clean house at the Department of Education from Wright on down, along with a goodly portion of district administrators around the state. The IHL needs the same, from the Board of Trustees on down.

The sad part is that given the per capita expenditure on "education," with competent educational administrators Mississippi could be a "national leader" in something besides not abjectly failing on education as fast as it has in the past.

The Truth Hurts - As it Should said...

Most non-Madison County/Rankin County public grade schools and pre-grade schools in MS are free babysitting and free meal venues, and any other free shit that comes along.

Anonymous said...

@1:50pm - Yeah, blame it on some PHD in some other part of the country because Fox News said so. Yeah or blame it on the dumbass, unengaged parents that send kids to school to be babysat and parented while you “work” all day and don’t actually raise your kids. And you wonder why they don’t have the discipline to sit at a computer long enough to learn anything. Starts at home. Mississippi ranks at the bottom in single parent homes, homes where parents have a college education, and homes where parents give a shit about the spawn they shat out.

But yeah, fuck you Fauci.

Goddamn this state is full of idiots.

Don’t censor the truth, Kingfish.

Anonymous said...

@2:38 PM - you are sure easy to troll, Mr. Gullible. Oh, Fauci has an MD and a MPH.

Anonymous said...

You are absolutely correct. The academy that my children attend didn’t have this problem. Most parents who are gainfully employed in Mississippi and live outside Madison/Rankin send our children to private academies. We do NOT send out children into the public school system in Mississippi. And we don’t care if you call us racist. We are not sacrificing our children on the alter of diversity.

Anonymous said...

2:10, I mostly agree with you with one big exception.

This is not the fault of distance learning. It's the fault of parents and students who don't have the discipline and common sense to see the benefit of school and ensure that the required work gets done.

A chef can make a gourmet, appetizing meal that has all the nutritional requirement AND tastes delicious. But if the diners refuse to eat, the chefs can't be expected to pry open their mouths and force feed them. That's the situation teachers are facing with far too man students. Teachers can do everything properly, but if a student refuses to engage and parents refuse to intervene, there's not much else a teacher can do.

Teachers face this with in-person students as well. So distance learning is not the problem. In fact, distance learning has some advantages, namely eliminating behavior problems so teachers can teach and the students who are participating can learn. Disruptive student? Kick them out of the Zoom meeting!

The problem is much more students and parents than it is distance learning — so much so that we can't really blame the current state of education on COVID.

Anonymous said...

@2:38p- I didn’t make the comment, but can understand the poster’s logic.

Fauci (and Gates) funded the Wuhan lab. The virus was intentionally spread at the 2019 Military Games per the Chinese defector with working knowledge. (Do some research. Many atheletes got sick with a mystery illness after the games.) Whether you want to believe it or not, Fauci bears a HUGE burden in the development and spread of the virus, as well as ALL the chaos that has since ensued. Need more proof, look at every single step Gates has made since the publicity of COVID-19. His actions demonstrate his desperation to separate himself from and protect his corporation and spouse. He KNOWS what they did. Why not check out how much Fauci has profited through this debacle? It’s sickening!! And he STILL gets a Science pass from all those who believe our government cares about its people.

Imagine the difference if they had admitted the leak, stopped all travel, used known effective meds, and traced and quarantined as needed. This could have been over in the Spring of 2020. Instead, Fauci became the face of the chaos, continues to profit enormously, and is seen as a savior by folks like you.

Without Fauci’s interference through the Wuhan lab, neglect of the truth, constant flip-flopping on science, and overall arrogance, the stats would likely have continued to improve. So, all in all, the original comment makes sense and is valid.

Anonymous said...

@ 2:10

Good read. You're right on and did a masterful job of communicating the real situation without being too direct and certainly without hurting any feelings.

Now let me translate:

Most parents are dumbasses and the kids they produce are worse than them.

What we need is more birth control.

Anonymous said...

@3:10p- I’m sorry, but you are wrong. Distance learning IS a part of the problem in this equation. Elementary students, without proper parental support, CAN NOT master their objectives through distance learning. Not to mention, those students had 2 hours or less of teacher instruction a day versus a full day of teacher-guided instruction in the classroom. Not to mention, the parental dishonesty of parents completing work for children to save face!!

About those discipline-problem kids you speak of cutting off of Zoom… 99% of the time they are the kids who are THE MOST BEHIND! So, no, it’s not a benefit to cut them off from learning.

I can see it working for some high school students with good self discipline, but overall , it’s not effective… and the scores demonstrate that!!

The number of current elementary students performing below grade level is BEYOND ALARMING! There are current second graders who are still functioning on a kindergarten level. Current fourth graders still functioning in a second grade level. The teachers cannot overcome this deficiency, and continue to press forward on grade level learning, in 36 weeks. Thousands of students state-wide were passed along due to COVID. There’s going to be a test performance issue for years to come!!

Anonymous said...

@3:47p- Yes, but guess how many educators can tell the parents the crystal clear truth??

ZERO, ZERO is the answer.

I’m hearing stories of parents taking their YOUNG kids to the doctor for anxiety drugs because they are anxious/afraid to go to school and take weekly tests. They are anxious because their reading and comprehension skills are two grades behind. However, no-involvement-mom is all for drugs for their baby, but mention holding them back or getting a tutor and the mom goes ape shit! THIS thinking is sadly the norm in undereducated Mississippi. I’m just praying the pediatricians are knowledgeable on this topic.

Anonymous said...

Throw $ at it-

Anonymous said...

"This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware of them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom.."

Anonymous said...

What testing do the academies do, do they publish results? I have heard that most graduates have a hard time at the major 4 year colleges and need remedial help at Junior Colleges.

Krusatyr said...

Do the percentages shown reflect actual average test scores or are they percentages of national average test scores?

It is much worse if MS is performing at 42% to 47% of what kids' national scores are averaging across the country.

Anonymous said...

Step #1-Fire Carey Wright!

Anonymous said...

Parents, if you want more than a bad public school experience, save a few bucks and send your kids to a parochial school or academy. MOST (not all) school districts in Mississippi are failing their students. Why? The schools are more worried about feels than results. Add to it single parent homes, teachers that barely got out of college, and school districts that have shitty leadership, and this is what you get.

Anonymous said...

5:55 am: That’s laughable. Kids that graduate from MRA, JP, and JA don’t go the JC route. They don’t need to. They get full rides to in-state schools and big money to go out of state.

Grow up.

Anonymous said...

I don’t know much about does mentioned above, I am sure their are some good ones. The ones outside of the metro don’t have a good track record with sending kids to college as far as I know.

Anonymous said...

Talk about rotten apples, spoiled brats, private /academy school kids are just as unruly as their buddies in public school kids.I have taught in all of them, there isn’t much difference. We are underpaid in all systems.

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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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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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