POSTED: Monday, April 8, 2013 - 7:00am
UPDATED: Monday, April 8, 2013 - 7:04am
BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — It's what students have been preparing for all year, the iLEAP test, and kids across the state will be sitting down to the test this morning. But many have said they already are starting to feel the pressure.
"I am studying a lot because I am nervous for the leap test this year. I am really scared," explained Grace Martin, a 7th grader at McKinley Middle Magnet.
"Scared,” exclaimed Autumn London when asked about the test, “because I want to do my best and pass to the 7th grade."
Fears of passing are real, the difference between a mastery and an unsatisfactory score could be the difference between moving up a grade level or staying behind. It’s not just the students who are feeling the pressure though. Under the state’s added value model assessment, iLEAP results are also factored in to measure just how effective a teacher is, and lower scores or scores without enough improvement could cost them their jobs.
"It’s game day. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday of this week are big days that of course determines, by the state of Louisiana, how well we've performed in the school year. So am I nervous? A little. But I feel confident that our students and teachers have worked hard all year," said Herman Brister Jr., Principal at McKinley Middle.
"The better the kids perform the better we look in terms of scores and things like that. So just keep them relaxed, keep them calm," added Suguna Mayweather, a member of the administrative team at the middle school.
Though they're worried, students know the key to passing is all in their minds.
"I am definitely excited. You just have to make sure you're well prepared because you want to go on to the next grade. You don't want to fail it or anything. Keep calm and master the leap," advised 8th grader Cierra Johnson.
Kids across the state will continue taking the test for the entirety of the week.