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Maplewood Middle in the American Press


By Lisa Addison
Out of 11 middle schools in Calcasieu Parish, Maplewood Middle School in Sulphur is the only one that achieved a letter grade of A on the state Department of Education’s recently released annual report card, increasing its score from 87.9 the previous year to 102 this year. “We have a lot to celebrate,” said Principal Saberly O’Quain, who is in her second year as principal of Maplewood Middle. “Our students and teachers have all worked so hard. From the teachers to the students to the administrators, everyone is so excited about this wonderful achievement.” O’Quain said there are several reasons for the increase, but that community support has been instrumental. “There have been so many changes the last couple of years, including huge changes in curriculum,” she said. “But we are fortunate in that our community stood by us and trusted us through those changes.” For middle schools, 95 percent of the grade is based on student achievement on annual assessments, and 5 percent is based on credits earned through the end of students’ ninth-grade year. “This accomplishment is the culmination of hard work from not only our faculty and staff, but also our students,” Superintendent Karl Bruchhaus said in a statement. “Our goal remains to provide a quality education for all students, and we will continue to embrace opportunities for improvement in the future.” The Calcasieu Parish performance score growth of 3.9 points raised the overall school system from a C to a B in the accountability program. State education officials said the latest performance scores for public schools and public school districts show improvements in “nearly every measure of academic progress.” But they also said the school performance grading system needs improvement. Officials said, for instance, that the system still doesn’t reflect gains by low-achieving students.