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LABI Statement on Importance of In-Person Learning

August 4, 2021

BATON ROUGE, LA – This morning’s release of the LEAP scores for Louisiana students for the 2020-2021 school year are disheartening.  As expected, the data show a significant learning loss over the last year, and we have a long way to go to get back on track.

Of the information released, perhaps the most important statistic shows that in-person learning is best for our students.  For those children who participated in in-school learning for the entire year (grades 3-8), 36% of them scored at the “Mastery” level or higher. In contrast, of the students who moved to 100% virtual learning, only 21% of them scored at the “Mastery” level or higher.

“These scores are extremely discouraging but not surprising,” said Lauren Gleason, LABI’s Director of Education and Workforce Development. “It’s imperative that districts submit focused and detailed remediation plans to ensure that our students get up to speed as quickly as possible.”

Other key takeaways include:

3rd – 8th grades
– 40% of all students achieved “Mastery” in English, down four percentage points from 2019
– 27% of all students achieved “Mastery” in Math, down 8 percentage points from 2019
– The number of students that scored “Unsatisfactory” (the lowest of five levels) increased by five percentage points from 2019

High school 
– The number of students achieving “Mastery” fell five percentage points from 2019, with Algebra showing the biggest decline


LABI President and CEO Stephen Waguespack said, “We can’t reiterate the importance of in-person learning enough, and now we have the data that proves it. Louisiana must come together to do what’s necessary to keep our schools and economy open.”

As we stated yesterday, we encourage Louisianans to comply with the Governor’s executive order and to get vaccinated as soon as possible to stave off any type of economic shutdown. Our students deserve better than what these scores reflect. We look forward to working with our schools and educators to make sure our students get back to where they should be.