The Louisiana Department of Education released its annual school and district performance scores Nov. 13, results that show overall continued improvement in St. Charles Parish Public Schools’ (SCPPPS) K-12 public schools.
The district performance of SCPPS showed improvement from a lower score of 85.6 in 2018-2019 to a higher score of 87.0 in 2022-2023, an increase of 1.4 points.
SCPPS’ individual schools also showed improvement, evidenced by a raise in overall letter ratings of the parish’s public schools. SCPPS ended the 2018-19 school year with 13 district “B” rated schools and two “C” rated schools. Following the release of 2022-23 scores, the SCPPS district now has two “A” schools, 11 “B” schools, and two “C” schools.
The 2018-2019 school year is used as the basis for comparison, given it was the last full school year before the twin disasters of COVID-19 and Hurricane Ida later struck.
The parish’s two public high schools showed marked improvement in academic growth with the Department of Education’s scores release, given both schools now carry the coveted “A” rating. Together, Destrehan High School and Hahnville High School now boast a higher number of St. Charles Parish students graduating high school within four years. SCPPS’ strength of diploma index increased this year as well, meaning more students are graduating with college credits through Advanced Placement and Dual Enrollment courses, or graduating with industry-based certifications through career and technical courses.
“This accomplishment is evidence of the school system’s commitment to providing enriching education opportunities for our students,” SCPPS Superintendent Dr. Ken Oertling said. “By earning college credits and industry-based certifications while still in high school, students are graduating future-ready with a solid foundation and a financial advantage.”
Oertling pointed out high school seniors in SCPPS’ graduating class of 2023 collectively saved more than $2 million in tuition from credits earned through the school system’s Advanced Placement and Dual Enrollment courses, along with the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) offered within St. Charles Parish public schools.
The Louisiana Department of Education releases school and district performance scores annually, a practice required by federal law and the Louisiana State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE).
Louisiana schools are expected to transition to a more rigorous grading scale beginning in 2024, as directed by BESE. The standard to attain specific letter grades will continue to increase in the future, resulting in a moving target – making it more challenging for SCPPS schools to continue to earn higher letter grades each year.
“For example, whereas a performance score of a 90 would earn an “A” according to the scale used previously and this year, the exact same score will be deemed a “B” next year according to the “new” scale,” SCCPS explained in its November press release.