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Test Results Show Mankato School District Excelling

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There's mixed news in our area in regard to new standardized test results released by the Minnesota Department of Education.

The Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment or (MCA) tests measure proficiency in reading and math.

In the Mankato school district, all grade levels tested are performing higher than the state averages in both reading and math.

"I'm very proud," said Sheri Allen, Mankato Area Public Schools superintendent. 

But in the Saint Clair School District, the results are nowhere near as positive.

"We're not panicking in our district," said Tom Bruels, St. Clair School District superintendent. "There's several factors that I think need to be considered heavily."

When examining the data, only about 29 percent of fifth-grade students in the St. Clair school district are proficient in Math. When you take a look at the 7th-grade level, that figure equates to under 41 percent.

Despite these findings, district officials in St. Clair say they stand by their teachers and curriculum."

"We don't believe that the data that came out is really reflective of how our kids are achieving, and how they're really doing," said Bruels.

Bruels says one factor to the results is the fact that districts could take the tests up to three times, with the highest scores being recorded. St. Clair opted to only go through the tests once.

"We've found limited value in the test results in terms of making academic changes to the curriculum," said Bruels.

Another round of standardized test results measuring growth will be released this month by the state.

School officials in Saint Clair say they have internal assessments in place, which show students in the district are performing adequately.