Jasper students praised for results on standardized tests
by Daniel Gaddy
Aug 27, 2010 | 1626 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A group of West Jasper Elementary School students receive certificates for above-average performance on state standardized tests. The ceremony was held in the gymnasium of West Jasper Elementary Thursday afternoon. (Photo by: Daniel Gaddy)
A group of West Jasper Elementary School students receive certificates for above-average performance on state standardized tests. The ceremony was held in the gymnasium of West Jasper Elementary Thursday afternoon. (Photo by: Daniel Gaddy)
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The faculty of West Jasper Elementary School on Thursday held a ceremony to recognize their students' recent exceptional academic performance.

West Jasper principal Rita Pilling said the school met all of its goals set by the Alabama Department of Education last year.

"We are very, very proud of that," she said.

The goals set by the board include yearly benchmarks , often referred to as Adequate Yearly Progress, for several standardized tests including the Stanford 10 and the Alabama Reading and Math Test.

West Jasper teachers awarded dozens of students with certificates and medals. Several students walked off the stage with two medals clanging together.

Students were awarded certificates for scoring above average on a specific subject. Gold medals were awarded for scoring 90 percent or above and silver medals for 80 percent or above.

Pilling told the students she is confident they will continue to exceed expectations.

"We feel like this is going to be the best year ever, and West Jasper students are going to shine," she said.

The ceremony also included guest speaker, the Rev. Donald Bobbitt. He told the students to strive to be the best at whatever interests them.

"Don't let anyone tell you that you can't exceed," he said.

Bobbitt also encouraged the parents in the crowd to concern themselves with being their child's parent, not their friend.

Pilling said she hopes the students follow Bobbitt's advice throughout their lives.

"Those are words to live by," she said.

Pilling said the faculty handed out more than 100 certificates and medals Thursday. Approximately 40 students also received certificates for completing Summer Skills Packets, which offer materials for students to prepare for lessons covered in their next grade level.

"The West Jasper students work very hard to achieve success in every level, and our teachers and parents work as team to help them accomplish that," Pilling said.