Pre-K instruction relies on state and federal funding
The Mississippi Department of Education has released the results of the kindergarten and pre-K assessments and the news is once again mostly good for Coast schools.
The assessments are given twice a year, during the fall and spring semesters.
The state average for the fall kindergarten test was 504, and it jumped to 710 in the spring.
The test “evaluates skills such as the ability to recognize letters and match letters to their sounds and a student’s recognition that print flows from left to right,” according to the MDE.
According to the testing criteria, students who scored between 675 and 774 have “mastered alphabet skills and letter-sound relationships. The student can identify many beginning and ending consonant sounds and long and short vowel sounds, and is probably able to blend sounds and word parts to read simple words. “
MDE said kindergarteners who hit the target of 681 should be on a solid path to meet third-grade reading requirements.
And the good news? All Coast schools exceeded the score of 681. The highest score was Stone County at 770, and the lowest was Poplarville at 699.
MDE also said the state did well in the Pre-Kindergarten Readiness Assessment. The testing was conducted on all state-funded pre-K programs for 4-year-olds, including those who participate in Early Learning Collaborative (ELC) programs, which require a minimum score of 498 for continued funding.
The average spring score for ELC students was 573, and the average score for other pre-K students was 550.
A score of at least 530 is considered achieving a mastery of the Mississippi State Standards.
Picayune School District was the only one in South Mississippi to participate in the ELC program. It scored a 451 in the fall, rising to 578 in the spring.
For pre-K schools that did not participate in the ELC programs, a score of 498 is still the benchmark.
Several Coast pre-K programs missed that mark — Ocean Springs, Poplarville and Hancock and Jackson counties. Biloxi scored the highest at 651.
Here’s how South Mississippi school districts scored on the 2018 Spring Kindergarten Readiness Assessment:
Stone County 770
Pearl River County 747
Jackson County 739
Harrison County 733
Ocean Springs 726
Long Beach 724
George County 722
Pass Christian 721
Bay St. Louis-Waveland 717
Moss Point 712
Hancock County 708
Here’s how South Mississippi school districts with pre-K programs that did not participate in the Early Learning Collaborative program scored on the spring test. Harrison County, Pearl River County, Stone County districts either did not have enough students to meet the state minimum or the data was suppressed for another reason.
George County 596
Moss Point 510
Jackson County 493
Hancock County 465
Ocean Springs 421
Find the full results at http://www.mde.k12.ms.us/OPR/Reporting/Assessment/2017-18