School Superintendent Explains Low Test Scores

Tulsa Public Schools released new information about the decline in test scores this past school year. The results show some of the lowest test scores in the last 5 years.

"I think this is a clear picture that we have students who are underachieving," said Dr. Keith Ballard, about test scores that reveal struggling schools, like Emerson Elementary.

Emerson and 5 other elementary schools struggled with less than 10 percent of their third graders passing the math exam.

Dr. Ballard says special needs students were forced to take the same test as mainstream students.

"Special Ed students were figured in with no assessments, whatsoever. And in the past they've all qualified to have modified assessments," said Ballard.

He says that impacted test scores along with changing test standards, testing companies and students enrolling late in the school year.

Todd Loftin, who directs Special Education at the State Department of Education says schools must reach everyone.

"This is an opportunity to say are we really doing all that we can? Are we providing all of the accommodations that we need to be providing? Are we giving them all the instructional help they really need," said Loftin.

The district plans to provide more intervention, and possibly mandatory summer school.