Each year, Minnesotan third through eighth-grade students take the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment tests for reading and mathematics.

In addition, fifth graders take the science exams. This year at Northside, over 70% of the students met, or exceeded the assessment standards.

“We’ve spent time over the years aligning our curriculum and instruction with the standards, making sure we’re addressing everything we need,” Principal Doug Storbeck.

The school spends a hefty amount of time each day focusing on reading and math. The state has certain expectations for students to be able to read at a certain level by third grade.

Northside’ scores continue to creep ever higher with the emphasis on reading and math.

“These scores would definitely be our highest overall scores,” said Storbeck. “We’ve been inching upward over the last five years in both math and reading.”

Each year, there is a window to take the tests, that lasts from the end of February, through to the beginning of May.

St. James typically takes these tests in April, allowing students more time to prepare for these tests.