St. John Public Schools ranks in the top 10 statewide LEAP improvement

Published 3:58 pm Wednesday, August 2, 2023

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RESERVE – St. John the Baptist Parish Public Schools landed in the top 10 statewide for improvement on the LEAP 2025 assessment, according to results for the 2022-23 school year released today by the Louisiana Department of Education.

Collectively, the St. John Parish School District grew three points on its Mastery+ rate. Nearly all schools saw improvement in the percentage of students scoring mastery or above combining ELA, math, science. Garyville Magnet had the biggest gains, moving up seven points over the previous school year. Fifth Ward Elementary School and Lake Pontchartrain Elementary School also saw major improvement, gaining six points each.

Outgoing Superintendent Rebecca Johnson said the growth is indicative of the effort put in by all stakeholders as the district embarked on a “Journey to Excellence” at the start of the last school year.

“At the opening of schools last year, we made a commitment to a Journey to Excellence for our students and community,” Johnson said. “Today, the opening of schools is here upon us and I’m here to tell you … we did it! We honored that commitment! Excellence is growth and progress on a daily basis, and this proves excellence was elevated every day in our schools. Thank you to the students, teachers, staff, and leaders who worked relentlessly every single day to display excellence in instruction and learning. It’s your time, St. John. Let’s continue to elevate excellence every day this school year and be honored in the top 10 in the state every year! It was truly an honor to be your superintendent for the last year and three months, and to see and be a part of the love and commitment the students, staff, teachers, and leaders have to grow our schools, students, and community.”

The one exception to the growth trend was Emily C. Watkins Elementary, which decreased by one point from the 2021-2022 percentage scores. However, ECW remains ranked in the top three St. John the Baptist Parish Public Schools for students scoring mastery or above. John L. Ory was the district’s highest performing school on the LEAP 2025 assessment, with 38% of scholars scoring mastery or above on ELA, math and science combined.

On the state level, students showed progress for the second consecutive year. Results show a two-point jump in proficiency statewide. Additionally, 75% of school systems showed improvement from 2021-22 to 2022-23.

Ascension Parish remained the highest achieving statewide with a mastery+ rate of 51, followed closely by Central Community and West Feliciana, tied for second at 50. St. Charles Parish ranked in the top 10 with a mastery plus score of 42.

“Today’s results continue a trend of consistent progress for schools across our state,” said Deputy Superintendent Dr. Jenna Chiasson. “We’ve been intentional about our focus on strong academic instruction delivered by effective teachers focused on individual student needs. That approach will keep Louisiana moving forward.”

Nationally, Louisiana moved from being ranked 46th to 42nd among all states and is currently ranked No. 1 for reading growth among fourth graders.

“I’m pleased to see an academic rise in Louisiana for the second straight year — a true testament to the hard work taking place in Louisiana classrooms every single day,” said State Superintendent Dr. Cade Brumley. “While I am encouraged, we must remain committed to the implementation of needed practice and policy shifts as too many students remain below proficiency.”

While reading/ELA are on the rise, Louisiana has continued to see declines in math, with elementary students scoring higher than middle school students.

The full LEAP 2025 reports can be viewed at