Local News

May 23, 2013 6:54 PM by Heather Jackson

Banquete Boasts Superb TAKS Test Results

BANQUETE - A high school in South Texas has some of the highest test scores in the nation. According to TAKS results released today, Banquete High School students scored 100% in social studies, 100% in science, 98% in math, and 96% in reading.

The Superintendent Jim Rumage took us on a tour of the small town with a largely Hispanic population, many families there struggle to make ends meet.

Something the superintendent was warned about before coming to the district 8 years ago, but says was his last concern.

"I think the main thing is, is you gotta' have high expectations for every kid that walks through our school and we do," Jim Rumage, the Superintendent of Banquet ISD explains.

Everyday students see flags of different universities displayed in the cafeteria to remind them of endless possibilities.

Rumage tells us students ponder, "Where am I gonna go? Am I going to go to Yale, am I going to go to Baylor, you know am I going to go to Florida State, am I going to go to Texas Tech? Where am I gonna go to school?"

At this school no student is left behind. Even aspiring neurologist, Stephanie Baltierra. She says she felt like a failure after having a baby this past October.

"Telling teachers I don't know if I could do this anymore but they're like 'no, no, no, you're doing great, you're a good student, you are going to do well.'"

Baltierra is one of many students who are paired up with a teacher when they begin to struggle in the classroom.

Taking care of all of the students that come into this school and sit in these seats is a hard task. But the teachers and administrators here have one big secret: they take care of themselves.

"We did a book study. It is called the energy bus and so we are always digging each other, *does a nudging motion* 'are you on the bus', 'are you falling off the bus' and the energy is about keeping it real, keeping it positive," Mary Lee Crane, a Social Studies Teacher at Banquete HS says.

Motivating her teach outside of the curriculum.

"Who wants to read about what happens to Congress and Obamacare?" she asks a student.

"It will not apply to members of Congress. Members of congress already exempt from the social security system," a student replies.

Having students succeed in tough subjects like these is what has the superintendent speechless, and in tears

"I am just so proud of these kids," Rumage says.

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