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July 10, 2012

Logansport touts rise in ISTEP scores

Superintendent says more work needed on fourth-grade math

LOGANSPORT — Logansport Community School Corporation has seen its English/language arts scores rise for the fourth straight year and its math scores take a slight decline, according to ISTEP results reported to the school board Monday.

Each spring, third- through eighth-graders take the state standardized tests.

“Overall, it’s nice to see that when we look at the corporation and we look at where we’re going, the steady improvement that we’ve shown over the past several years,” said Michele Starkey, superintendent of the corporation. “Third grade language art scores are very high. Fifth grade math very strong.”

About 83 percent of third graders passed language arts and 76 percent of those same students passed the math portion. In fifth grade, 71 percent passed language arts while 78 percent passed math.

In fourth grade, however, about 74 percent of students passed language arts, while only 63 percent passed math.

“Fourth grade math scores are a concern to look at,” Starkey said. “Kind of what happened there? Normally you don’t see that big of a disparity between math scores and language arts scores within the same grade. So we’ll take some time, dig deeper into there and see what’s going on.”

Sixth-grade results show 75 percent passing language arts and about 71 percent passing the math. Seventh-and eighth-grade language arts and math passing percentages range from as low as 68 percent in eighth-grade language arts to as high as 71 percent in eighth-grade math and seventh-grade language arts.

Starkey points to what is referred to as the “brain drain” in seventh- and eighth-grades where students begin to turn off learning.

“I think we see some of that here,” she said. “I wish I could figure out the answer ... but I don’t know the answer. It’s just keep plugging away and being focused on those standards.”

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