"High Achievement always takes place in the framework of high expectation." - Charles Kettering

Thursday, September 19, 2013

ECSD School Report Card Results

As promised, I will drill into the school report cards for the four buildings in the ECSD. I'm including the "grading scale" for reference:
  • 83-100: Significantly Exceeds Expectations
  • 73-82.9: Exceeds Expectations
  • 63-72.9: Meets Expectations
  • 53-62.9: Meets Few Expectations
  • 0-52.9: Fails to meet Expectations
The metrics measured for most schools are:
  • Student Achievement
  • Student Growth
  • Closing Gaps 
  • On Track and Post-secondary Readiness.
Levi Leonard: Because we have only K-2 at our elementary school, only two out of the four metrics for rating schools are applicable for Levi Leonard: Student Achievement and On Track and Post-secondary Readiness. Even the Achievement Score is based on 3rd grade testing. It's fair that they are held accountable for this score because the October Grade 3 reading and math achievement is largely met from curriculum in grades K-2. The only thing Levi Leonard's score is effectively based on is attendance, which they couldn't increase. I'm not sure how the final score is calculated because it is not the average value of the  two metrics for which the school has gathered data.
  • 2011-12 Result: 72.3 = Meets Expectations, High C
  • 2012-13 Result: 71.7 = Meets Expectations, Lower High C
Less than one point below the cutoff between scoring levels, Levi Leonard had an opportunity to move up from a high "C" to a low "B" but instead dropped in their rating this year.

Theodore Robinson: TRIS tests all grade levels and therefor has data for all four metrics measured for school report card scores.

  • 2011-12 Result: 75.4 = Exceeds Expectations, Low B
  • 2012-13 Result: 74.3 = Exceeds Expectations, Lower B

TRIS gained moderately in two of four metrics between last year and this year, Student Achievement and "On-Track," each with less than a point overall gain. Student Growth lost by less than a point and Closing Gaps by nearly six points, resulting in an overall loss of more than a point in its final score. In each case, the primary bugaboo at this level is math achievement level. Therefore, the change in the math curriculum at the elementary level this year is confirmed as necessary, despite all the uproar it has caused amongst staff because they didn't get it until a week before school started. Better late than never in this case.

JCMcKenna Middle School: The Middle School also tests all grade levels and has useful metric data for all four categories.

  • 2011-12: Result: 70.6 = Meets Expectations High C
  • 2012-13: Result: 71.2 = Meets Expectations Higher C

JC McKenna is the only school in the district to increase their score. Having to overcome six years of ineffective student growth to make this modest gain makes them a rock star in my book. The devil is in the details, however. They gained two full points in overall achievement level and nearly three points in "Closing Gaps." These two are hard to do simultaneously, as the playing field is so often leveled by bringing the high performers lower, so kudos to the staff! I'll drill deeper into this topic later when I discuss how each school performed on their Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs). They're not off the hook entirely on this point. They lost more than two points on "Student Growth," my personal beef with the district, and stood even with last year's score in the "On-Track" category.

Evansville High School: The High School only tests tenth graders, so there is no current method to measure student growth within the school, but the other three categories are measured. Again, the overall score is not an average of the three scores. I'll have to do some more research on this, I guess. Their score was the same as last year.

2011-12 Result: 78.1 = Exceeds Expectations, a Mid-range B.
2012-13 Result: 78.1 = Exceeds Expectations, a Mid-range B.

A modest gain (less than a point) in Student Achievement was cancelled out by a nearly two point loss in Closing Gaps in both math and reading (something they did well last year) and a 1.6 point gain in "On-Track."

To summarize, each school maintained the "grade" earned using the state report card last year. The raw scores dropped or stagnated for 75% of the schools and went up for 25% of them without changing the assigned category.

I'll make a separate post regarding the AMOs for each school.

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