Four Years After Katrina
How do voters feel about the changes?
When asked in an open-ended question to list things that are better than they were before Katrina, one in four voters named education – the number one response. Continue reading
Historically, New Orleans has done a dismal job helping its seniors cross the finish line. In fact, in spring 2005, the last year all the schools were under the Orleans Parish School Board, only 79% of New Orleans seniors graduated, tying Madison Parish for the worst record in the state. Thus, for every 100 seniors, 21 did not get to walk across the stage and receive a diploma.
These gains are truly significant and show the reforms underway are working.
This edition of Leslie’s Notebook will focus on the high stakes tests – 4th and 8th grade English and Math LEAP tests, along with the Graduation Exit Exam – to highlight the tremendous improvement both this year and since the state took over the schools in 2006.
How can I proclaim this with such confidence?
Because we now have a new model of public education reform that is no longer dependent upon Paul Vallas or any other single person for its success.
The recently released School Performance Scores give us the first clear picture of how schools in New Orleans are performing since Katrina.
Student test scores are used for three different measurements: student performance, school performance, and district performance. In May, the state releases the test scores and gives information on individual student performance: how many passed the LEAP test, did scores go up, etc. This month, the state issued both School and District Performance Scores.
School Performance Scores (SPS) analyze the test data at the school level allowing us to compare one school’s performance to another. A District Performance Score takes the student test data for all students in the district to evaluate district performance.
For a listing of schools and scores go to: School Scores
So How Do We Compare Post-Katrina?
Schools are better
Fewer are failing. The percentage of schools that are one star or higher (non-failing) has increased from 34% to 55%. Continue reading