Students in Tangipahoa’s public schools will begin spring testing this week, and while some students (and parents) panic, School Superintendent Melissa Stilley said there are several things families can do to ease worries over the annual assessments.
Statewide testing begins this week for students in grades 3-8. Because of class configurations and limitations on computers in local schools, Tangipahoa will stagger testing by individual classes from April 1-May 3.Students in grades 3 and 4 who take the paper-based LEAP 2025 test will do so from April 29-May 3.
Stilley said that while test scores are important, the key to making testing easier on the entire family is to be mindful of the testing process and encourage students to do their very best.
“As a parent and a grandparent myself, I try to remind students that spring testing is their chance to shine as they put all the knowledge and skills they have gained over the past eight months into action,” Stilley said.
Stilley said students need to be reminded that they know the material, that they have practiced the necessary skills, and they are both ready and capable of taking these tests.
“Encourage your child to speak positively and to practice positive self-talk when it comes to testing,” Stilley said. Great examples of this include, “I can do it;” and “I know how to do this.”
During testing, it’s especially important students are in class. Make sure your students attend school on their testing days, and do your best to have them in class on time. Encourage your child to eat breakfast before testing, and if time is tight in the morning, encourage them to eat breakfast at school. Breakfast and lunch are both served at no cost to students at all Tangipahoa Parish School campuses.
Students who do experience test anxiety or who show signs of worry about testing can practice simple relaxation exercises to help them overcome nerves before and during testing. Regulated breathing and simple visualization exercises are great ways to settle nerves. Stilley also encouraged families to talk to their students about testing.
“Sometimes just being there to listen and reassure your child is the best medicine for a case of the nerves,” Stilley said.
Stilley encourages parents to spread some positivity in these coming weeks, sharing notes of encouragement or just a kind word here and there with students and teachers alike as testing continues.
“When we make someone else smile, when we shower others with kindness, that’s when we do our part to lift spirits. No matter what’s going on in your world today, take a moment to make someone’s day brighter,” Stilley said.
For more info on state testing, go to the district website, www.TangiSchools.org, or contact your child’s school.