Area districts meet expectations on report cards


By Drew Stambaugh - dstambaugh@aimmediamidwest.com



The Ohio Department of Education released school report cards Sept. 12 and most area districts received Bs and Cs overall.

Delta, Evergreen, and Archbold each received a B overall. Wauseon, Pettisville, Swanton, and Fayette all received a C.

“We are pleased with a B rating but we understand there is room for growth and we are always working to improve student performance,” said Evergreen Superintendent Eric Smola.

Wauseon, Pettisville, Swanton, and Fayette all received a C rating overall.

“As a district we will dissect the current report card data and work to improve our component grades,” said Wauseon Superintendent Troy Armstrong. “Our staff already works hard to prepare our students for enrollment in post high school learning; serving in the military; earning a living wage; or engaging in a meaningful, self-sustaining vocation. These efforts align directly with Ohio’s Strategic Plan where each child is challenged, prepared, and empowered.”

Swanton superintendent Chris Lake said that district officials are just starting to dig into the data

“Our overall district grade was a C, which is where we have been for the last few years,” said Lake. “It also means that we are meeting ODE’s expectations.”

Educators from around the state have continually told residents not to place undue importance on the report cards.

“Overall, the report cards provide the district with data we can use to monitor teaching and learning,” said Armstrong. “The fact that Ohio’s report cards do not compare the same group of students each year does not accurately reflect student performance year to year.”

“The state report card is one metric by which we measure the district’s performance,” said Lake. “It is not the sole indicator of our success or failure, it is just another source of data that we can put to good use.”

Armstrong specifically cited an issue with the Prepared for Success indicator. The goal of Ohio Department of Education’s recently released Ohio’s Strategic Plan for Education is to increase annually the percentage of high school graduates who, one year after graduation are: enrolled and succeeding in a post high school learning experience, including an adult career technical education program, an apprenticeship and/or a two-year or four-year college program; serving in a military branch; earning a living wage; or engaged in a meaningful, self-sustaining vocation.

“Although this is the goal, the report card’s Prepared for Success indicator does not include students who are serving in the military; earning a living wage; or engaged in a meaningful, self-sustaining vocation,” Armstrong said. “In my opinion, the state report cards need to be eliminated to allow districts to set district specific goals and demonstrate success via data.”

The Ohio Education Association (OEA) also urged state lawmakers to enact reforms that would end the use of arbitrary letter grades that they said are biased against low income districts.

“It is past time to end the use of confusing and misleading state report cards in Ohio,” said OEA President Scott DiMauro. “We need a new report card system that is fair, informative, and transparent.

“It’s widely recognized that the current report cards rely too heavily on standardized tests and counter-intuitive methodologies that are stacked against low-income districts. As the work continues to fix the flawed state report cards, efforts must also be made to do more to overcome the barriers to learning that are caused by poverty.”

Full report card data is available at https://reportcard.education.ohio.gov/.

By Drew Stambaugh

dstambaugh@aimmediamidwest.com

Reach Drew Stambaugh at 419-335-2010

Reach Drew Stambaugh at 419-335-2010