The Lakewood City Schools district and school building state Report Cards expected to be released any day now will look dramatically different than what everyone is used to as Ohio has changed the way it measures and rates the performance of its schools and districts.
The 2012-2013 school and district Report Cards will grade schools and districts on a mix of new and previously used componentswith an A-F letter-grade system rather than the old terms of Excellent with Distinction, Excellent, Effective, Continuous Improvement, Academic Watch and Academic Emergency. These ratings were based primarily on students’ performance on state assessment tests.
These new letter grades will be given in six broad categories: Achievement, Gap Closing, Graduation Rate, Progress, K-3 Literacy and Prepared for Success. Schools that have traditionally been rated Excellent and Excellent with Distinction may not receive As under the new system because the components are far more complicated and stringent.
Assessments are still a major part of school and district grades but the results will be categorized in a way that the state believes will be easier for parents to understand:
- Achievement:How wellarestudents doing against national and statestandards of success?
- Gap Closing: Are students in all demographic groups making gains in reading and math?
- Graduation Rate: Are all students graduating on time?
- Progress: Are students of all abilities growing academically?
- K-3 Literacy: Are students in kindergarten through third grade reading at or above grade level?
- Prepared for Success: Are students ready for college and careers?
The new Report Card will have nine measures receiving grades under these six broad categories. Anoverall grade for the school and/or district will not be given until August 2015 to give districts time to adjust to the new system and focus their efforts on being successful in all areas being measured.
Unlike the straightforward formulas behind achieving an A or B in a class, the methodology used to calculate these grades are far more complex than the letter grades we received as students in times past.
It will take some time for district staff to adjust to the new accountability requirements and adjust the district's instruction strategies and focus accordingly. These first year ratings with the new system will be a shock for many of the district's buildings but officials are confident that the ratings will indicate that Lakewood students progress more than one year academically in a year’s time.
Raising the bar for accountability and academic performance is a good goal, and district administrators are committed to working with instructional staff and parents as everyone adapts to these new standards and expectations. Lakewood City Schools' number one district goal each year is to improve student academic performance and that mission will never change year to year.
For more information on the new grading scale and report cards, visit: www.newreportcard.education.ohio.gov