Sioux City Students Prepare for IA Assessment Test with Pep Rally

This week students across Iowa will take the state assessment test, but will the stress to perform hurt Siouxland schools?

The annual evaluation measures student's progress and knowledge.

In Siouxland, the Sioux City Community School District is prepping students and getting them excited for Tuesday's tests with assemblies

But, as Siouxland News Reporter Beairshelle Edmé tells us, not every one is on board with the exam.

The "No Child Left Behind" law means nationwide school districts must perform on state assessment tests; Sioux City Community School District is no exception.

Monday, both Spalding Park Elementary and North Middle School motivated its students with rallies before the big exam.

Teachers belted out a spoof of the popular song 'What Does the Fox Say?' and students danced around to the new rendition.

"We want to pump them up to believe that 'Yeah I can do it and I want to do well on this and I want to better than last year,'" said Spalding's Principal Mimi Moore.

But do these tests actually measure annual progress?

Earlier this year, Superintendent Dr. Paul Gausman expressed his concerns with the test to Siouxland News.

"Yeah, absolutely, there is a need for the state to take a close look at the assessment that we're using," said Gausman. "So, you know, to put in a very simple fashion, what we're required to teach is different from what we may be testing and certainly that's something that's a red flag something that we want to pay attention to," he added.

And test scores bring in federal funding.

If students tested poorly or didn't participate, then the district could feel the impact.

"Beyond funding, what's worse is the public perception that our schools are failing and that our children have to think they're going to a school that is failing because of one test score, a snap shot of one day not even on all of the courses that they're taking," said President Tammy Warwo of the Iowa State Education Association.

Moore admits the test demands a lot from her staff.

"You know there is a stress factor there but we also work as a team," said the principal.

Despite the stress and pressure of these statewide tests, officials hope that students will do their best and ace the test.

Iowa, as well as Nebraska, remains one of a few states that still have not received a waiver from the Department of Education to no longer participating in these statewide standardized test.

If you have a story you want to tell or an incident you think needs to be investigated, our reporter Beairshelle Edmé wants to hear about it. OR