By SUE ELLEN ROSS – Staff Reporter

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 28, 2004

RESERVE – Everyone involved with education gets a report card. And the St. John Parish School District is no exception.

They recently received their 2002-2003 Louisiana District Accountability Report Card, and the news is not spectacular.

But St. John Parish School Superintendent Mike Coburn said the school system is “definitely improving.”

Based on the K-12 grade levels, the District’s Performance Score (DPS) is 66.8, which is lower than the state DPS score of 80.6.

“We are continually improving,” said Coburn. “Last year we were rated 58 out of 66 school districts in the state, and now we are 56, so we are moving up.”

The performance level of St. John Parish schools is One Star (*), which is just above academic warning.

Again, Coburn stated that the school system knows there is a margin for betterment. “Are we where we want to be? Absolutely not,” he said. “We realize that there are still areas of concern.

He cited the LEAP test scores. “We need to see more passing grades the first time the test is given, not with the LEAP summer school.”

The Direct Responsibility Index (DRI) was listed as “Good” on the report card. St. John Parish schools came in at 87.2, which is higher than the state DRI of 80.5

“We are 18th in the state in performance growth,” Coburn added. “We have experienced a 4.8 growth point rise in this area over last year.”

The report card covers 6,282 St. John Parish Students attending 12 public schools. Females account for 48.3 percent of the total, and 51.7 percent are males.

An overall view of the St. John Parish school systems shown on the report card lists 75.7 percent black students, 21.4 percent white students, and 2.9 percent other.