MPSD Expects Better Testing Results

State testing in Mississippi officially ended Thursday.

The MCT2 tests for third through eighth graders, and subject area tests for high school students started Tuesday.

Last year the Meridian Public School District received an overall low rating on the testing. This year major improvements are expected.

With state testing now behind him, the district superintendent says he is looking to the future.

"Many of our schools have been showing significant growth and we feel very confident about what the results will show," said Dr. Alvin Taylor.

"This year we have worked really hard to focus on assessing instruction," said Robin Miles, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction.
"We've given common assessments each 9 weeks. We've looked at those and broken that data down by grade level, by subject area, by teacher, by classroom, by student. We've used that data to make instructional decisions and I think that the concerted effort and focus on instruction throughout the year is going to make a difference in our test scores."

Although assessment testing of students has been done throughout the district periodically in the past, what made the tests different this year is that they counted as the student's 9 weeks test grades. Officials say in many cases, this made the students take the tests more seriously.

"These count as their 9 weeks grades to ensure that they would put 100% effort on them, and the kids have been doing very well," Taylor said.

Taylor says there is progress at all ten schools.

"The high school is doing extremely well. Northwest is doing extremely well. Carver is doing extremely well," Taylor said. "They're all making gains."

Statewide, the results from this week's tests are expected to be officially released in September.

Last year six Meridian public schools rated low performing; two were placed on academic watch. One school, Poplar Springs Elementary, was high-performing and just two points shy of receiving star school status.

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