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Vernon Parish ACT scores top state average

Published: Nov. 16, 2021 at 6:27 PM CST
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LEESVILLE, La. (KALB) - Vernon Parish schools have scored above the state average this year when it comes to ACT performance, according to official numbers presented to school board members.

Lisa Lohman, the secondary curriculum supervisor at the Vernon Parish School Board, gave credit to the teachers who, as well as the students, had to go through COVID-19 quarantines, two hurricanes and an unprecedented winter storm event last school year.

“They persevered, they were resilient, they stayed true to their focus and they definitely prepared our students to perform well on the ACT,” she said.

Lohman presented performance scores to the school board during their regular session, which showed Vernon Parish schools held an ACT performance score of 18.8, putting them above the state average score of 18.2.

“We just don’t strictly focus on ACT, we build it into the curriculum,” Lohman said. “We offer additional supports. Our teachers do ACT bell ringers. We encourage our students to participate in ACT boot camps. We offer ACT prep courses for our students.”

In comparison to other parishes in Central Louisiana, Rapides’ average was 18.3, Grant’s average was 17.1 and Avoyelles’ average was 16. According to the Louisiana Department of Education, state-wide, Vernon Parish was tied 11th with Cameron Parish as the highest ACT scores in the state. Superintendent James Williams said he’s proud that all their efforts have been paying off in the long run.

“Always proud of the extra effort and the hard work they do, and the hard work pays off,” he said. “We usually are at the top of the state.”

In regards to how the district services Fort Polk, Lohman said the scores have put the military installation as the third-highest-performing military installation in the country in relation to ACT performance. Fort Polk fell just behind military bases in Alabama and Tennessee, scoring .6 and .9 behind those installations respectively.

It’s worth mentioning that Louisiana’s average ACT score is still below the national average, which was 20.3.

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