Many parents are gearing up to get their kids ready for standardized testing this week. Tuesday is the big day for most students in the area. Northwest Louisiana has a history of failing schools, and some people believe parents can help turn that around.
"Parental involvement is important 24 months out of the year," says Rosalind Glover-Bryant, the Parental Community Involvement Supervisor. "The first testing date is March 18, and that's next Tuesday, and then the next testing days will be April 7-10."
Standardized testing results are a way for the state to grade the students and to grade the schools' performance. "All of the test results are important to the parish because it determines the status of the schools," Bryant says.
In 2013, most schools in northwest Louisiana received C's and the number of failing schools in the state dropped by 4 percent. School officials hope that getting kids ready for these tests at home, as well as at school, will boost those scores.
"That will get them out of the situations of AU if they're in there, but it's just a report card that when you're looking at the schools these students are receiving the education that they should be receiving and that they are understanding what they're doing," Bryant says.
Bryant says these last few days before testing are too late to cram for the test. "The night before, please go to bed on time, I know with the changing of the time, some kids might want to stay up a little bit longer, because it's still daylight but they need to get in bed and get a good night rest, probably about 8 hours if possible," Bryant says.
Bryant says to feed your test takers a good breakfast, get them to class on time and with a positive attitude. "Send your child off to school with confidence building words of praise and support: you'll do great, believe in yourself, and the most important one, tell them I love you."
Bryant says from the home to the classroom, education is a team effort. She is passing out these tips to local parents: "Make sure your child gets a good night sleep before every test, provide a light, healthy breakfast on testing day, try to make the morning of the test a pleasant one, do not add to your child's stress, please! Have your child dress comfortable and arrive at school on time, and that's really important that they get there on time so that they don't have to go into a makeup status. Remind your child to listen carefully to the instructions from the teacher, read the directions for each questions carefully."
Test results are expected back before the school year ends. That is so students can plan on whether or not they need to take summer school classes. Good luck Louisiana!
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