The Van Wert County Courthouse

Monday, May. 25, 2020

Schools get good State Report Cards

VW independent/Ohio Department of Education news

COLUMBUS — Ohio’s 2011-2012 State Report Card finds that the state’s public schools are making steady academic gains as a new era of accountability approaches.

Locally, all three Van Wert County school districts did well, with Lincolnview and Crestview both rated “excellent” and Van Wert, which missed out on the top rating by just two-tenths of a point, earning an “effective” rating.

As was reported in October when preliminary ratings came out, Van Wert met 23 of 26 indicators, while Crestview met all 26 indicators and Lincolnview 24 of 26 indicators. All three schools also met the state’s Value Added criteria, but Van Wert was marked down for not meeting the Adequate Yearly Progress ranking.

For Van Wert, fifth-grade test scores were to blame for the district not earning an “excellent” ranking. The S.F. Goedde Building, which housed fifth-graders in 2011-2012, was also the only one of six district schools that didn’t earn an “excellent” rating on an individual basis.

“We have come a long way and that’s our only hiccup right now,” Superintendent Ken Amstutz said back in October.

Amstutz also noted in October that, for whatever reason, “stand-alone” grade levels like the Goedde Building’s fifth-grade classes, tend to not fare as well academically as regular multi-grade schools.

“Everybody has told us, other school districts, when you have a stand-alone grade level, that’s a problem,” he noted, adding that he hopes to see improvements for this school year now that fifth-graders are housed in the multi-grade Van Wert Elementary School (click here for Van Wert’s complete school report card).

Crestview Superintendent Mike Estes was pleased back in October when he learned that the district had returned to the “excellent” ranking after a couple of years of subpar performance, mostly due to failure to meet the Value Added indicator.

“To pass all 26 indicators is high praise for our staff and students,” Estes had said. “We stumbled a couple of years ago, but are getting back to where we should be.”

Much of the credit for the turnaround has gone to the district’s PRIDE Committee, which was formed to improve scores after the district fell to “continuous improvement” after “excellent” rankings prior to that (click here for Crestview’s full state report card).

Lincolnview’s then-interim superintendent, Doug Karst, was also pleased at his district’s performance on the State Report Card.

“I think it does indicate how solid a school district this is,” he noted, adding, “There is still for improvement, though (click here for Lincolnview’s full report card).”

Statewide, Ohio schools registered improvements in 14 of 26 indicators and met the state’s performance goal on 21 out of the 26 indicators. There were especially strong gains in eighth-grade math and science. The number of districts and schools exceeding expected growth in Value-Added also grew significantly.

Ohio schools still have much room to grow. The performance of Ohio’s economically disadvantaged students and minorities remains unacceptably low. Too many students drop out of high school and too many who enroll in college need to take remedial courses.

“We congratulate Ohio’s students, families and educators for making continued, solid academic progress,” said Acting Superintendent of Public Instruction Michael L. Sawyers. “But we will need to set the bar higher to ensure that all of our students are prepared for a future that will demand higher skills. Ohio’s minimal competency system must continue to reform for Ohio’s students to be competitive with their peers.”

Ohio’s accountability system will be changing in 2013. Starting this fall, the state will begin a transition to a new era of district and school performance reporting that will include an easy to understand A-F grading system. The new report cards will take a broader look at the key indicators of school effectiveness and will be based upon standards that ensure all students graduate ready for college and careers.

The current state-level totals include results for nine districts that were identified earlier this month by the Auditor of State as showing evidence that they “scrubbed” attendance data to potentially improve their report card results. The 2012 and 2011 report cards for those districts and all of their schools have had a watermark added, indicating that the results are subject to change pending further investigation by ODE.

The release of the final 2011-2012 State Report Card was scheduled for August 2012 but was postponed pending the conclusion of the investigation by the Auditor of State.
The information released this year includes a number of new ranking reports as stipulated in state law and Ohio’s May 2012 waiver from the U.S. Department of Education from certain elements of the No Child Left Behind Act. This report can be found at www.reportcard.ohio.gov and includes:

A list of 90 schools that have demonstrated either “High Progress” or “High Performance” while serving a significant number of economically disadvantaged students.

A ranking of schools and districts based upon Performance Index scores. The index looks at the performance of every student, not just those who score proficient or higher.

A ranking of districts based on Value-Added results, which show whether students meet the expected one year of growth for students in grades 4-8 in reading and math.

POSTED: 02/28/13 at 8:22 am. FILED UNDER: News