GULFPORT, MS - For one day, students at Pass Road Elementary in Gulfport were allowed to scream at the top of their lungs and even run through the halls. The school hosted a rousing pep rally Friday to get the students psyched about some serious tests next week.
"Our entire staff has invested in this. Everybody tutors every single day and I'm talking about since August," said principal Kenny Hudson. "We've been preparing for this like a Friday night football game."
If the students achieve high scores on the tests, their school could move up in the ranks from being 'high-performing' to a 'star' school.
"This is an all or nothing. We know what's on the line. We try not to put pressure on the children in terms of have to. This is a want to," said Hudson.
"We've been inching closer and closer to being a star school," Coach Adrian Dodson told the children. "There's not many star schools around here. We're this close."
"We want star! We want star! We want star!" the children chanted.
"We're excited for the opportunity," said Hudson. "We're like a thoroughbred horse wanting to jump out of the gate right now. So we're excited and hope to do really well."
And the students who excel will get a coveted prize.
"Third, fourth and fifth graders, you'll come back and get this trophy if you score Advanced," Hudson told the crowd.
The students realize it's time to get their head in the game and they know the entire school will be rooting for them. The tests are on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
Parents are encouraged to take these steps to help their children prepare for the tests:
- Make sure they get plenty of rest and eat breakfast.
- See that they arrive at school on time and are relaxed.
- Don't allow your children to be absent on test day unless absolutely necessary.
- And encourage them to do their best.