St. Mary students beat state in many LEAP categories

CENTERVILLE — The St. Mary Parish School Board heard good news about LEAP test results Thursday. And board members decided to honor a man who was educating students in Patterson decades long before state accountability exams.
The board voted to approve the dedication of Patterson High’s gym floor to the late Carey Mac Staples.
According to a presentation from Brightman Kornegay, Staples coached the basketball Lumberjacks. He worked for St. Mary schools 1968-2001 and took the basketball team to three Top 24 finishes, including state runner-up in 1977.
Staples also served as a teacher and principal. He died in 2017.
Plans are underway to make the dedication part of Patterson’s Main Street Festival in October.
Also Thursday, the board voted to declare a state of emergency in response to Tropical Storm Barry, which puts the district in line for federal and state resources to help with its response.
LEAP tests
The parish’s public school students grades 3-8 outperformed the scores in a significant areas, Superintendent Teresa Bagwell told the board. Results were released Thursday.
From Bagwell’s report:
—In mathematics, district elementary and middle school students exceeded state averages in the percent scoring at the basic or above achievement levels in every grade tested.
— The district also topped the state in five of the six tests in English Language Arts and four of the six tests in social studies.
—District third through eighth graders surpassed state proficiency averages in the percent of students scoring at the mastery or advanced achievement levels in four of the six tests in English language arts and three of six tests in both mathematics and social studies.
“The ability of St. Mary students to exceed state performance rates is a testament to the district’s academic rigor and support system,” Bagwell told the board. “As St. Mary has endeavored to ensure that every student receives instruction using curriculum that directly aligns to state standards and testing measures, achievement has continually risen.”
The board also approved these administrator appointments:
—Lauren Rentrop is the principal at Patterson Junior High.
—Mike Giroir is the assistant principal at Patterson Junior High.
—Kristin Percle is the acting principal at Berwick Junior High.
—Ryan Taylor is the acting assistant principal at Berwick Junior High.
—Noelle Lowrimore is acting assistant principal at Berwick High.
—Natasha Jackson is the principal at Franklin High School.
—Rose Hale is the science program manage at the Central Office complex.

This story has been changed to correct Lauren Rentrop’s new title.

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