State School Scores Out

By: Tony Tagliavia Email
By: Tony Tagliavia Email

There is some good news for mid-Michigan's largest school district in the results from the new statewide Michigan Merit Exam.

"My cup is always half-full," new Lansing Superintendent T.C. Wallace said.

High schoolers in the Lansing School District came close to the statewide average in social studies. But the numbers for math, science, reading and writing are still well below that benchmark.

"We have identified those as areas where we really need to shore up what we're doing in our classrooms and in our schools," Wallace said. "And that becomes our area of focus."

While numbers from the new test can't really be compared to numbers from the old one, Wallace says the Lansing district will use them to change how students learn when they arrive in a matter of weeks.

Jackson's numbers are slightly better than Lansing's, and while both are below the stage average, both outperformed other larger urban districts like Pontiac and Flint.

Their numbers were similar to Battle Creek's.

Charlotte had some numbers above the state average and others below. Waverly fell just short of the state average. A number of mid-Michigan districts, including DeWitt, East Lansing, Grand Ledge, Holt, Okemos, St. Johns and Mason had all of its scores above the state average.

"Overall, I think we're pleased," Mason Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Mark Dillingham said, considering that the new MME is different from the old MEAP tests.

Parents will understandably be concerned about how their child performs on the test but, as a parent, should you care about how the entire school or district does?

"Parents should be concerned about how their individual school is doing," Dililngham said. "It tells us how teachers are teaching and kids are learning."

Back in Lansing, Wallace says he's pleased with another figure in the results: participation.

"And the end result, we hope, is that more youngsters are going on to college, either two-year or four-year institutions," he said.

That's because the Michigan Merit Exam now includes the ACT, the test most schools use for admissions.

Click here or click on the "Seen on 10" link to your right to see results for your school or school district.

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