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A distinguished new principal, Dr. Rex Patton, has taken the helm at Mark Twain Middle School.

Patton previously served as principal of Coeur d'Alene Avenue Elementary, recipient of the 2008 California Distinguished School award and the 2007 Music Center's Bravo award while under Patton's leadership.  API test scores (Academic Performance Index) went from the low 600s to 900 during his tenure.

According to The Argonaut, Mark Twain Middle School's API score has already increased by 51 points to 706 since Patton arrived in September 2010.  Plans to attain another gain in academic achievement next year at the school include introducing new enrichment classes for "proficient" and "advanced" students; and new "flex classes" with additional instruction for students scoring at "basic" or below.

In addition, a world languages magnet will begin at the school this fall, making Mark Twain the only LAUSD middle school to offer such a higher level, intensive academic language program.  Students will take a “language wheel” during sixth grade, with a new language every quarter -- then will choose which language they want to focus on from options including Japanese, Spanish, French and Mandarin, with possibilities of German, Italian and Korean in flex classes.

Read the full story in The Argonaut.

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