UPDATED Monday, October 22, 2012 --- 10:40 a.m.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Most Wisconsin schools meet or exceed expectations as defined on new, more stringent report cards released by the state Department of Public Instruction.
The report cards of more than 2,100 public schools released Monday assign scores of between 0 and 100 based on student achievement, student growth in reading and math, graduation rates and closing of achievement gaps between different groups of students.
More than 85 percent of schools meet or exceed expectations.
Only 76 schools failed to meet expectations, the lowest possible ranking.
Gov. Scott Walker praises the news, but says too many schools are failing.
State Superintendent Tony Evers says the new report cards are designed to be a better and more comprehensive way to measure the effectiveness of schools in preparing students for college or work.
Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.
Posted Monday, October 22, 2012 --- 9:05 a.m.
MADISON — The majority of the state’s schools meet or exceed expectations according to preliminary report cards made public today that provide balanced, descriptive information about school performance using multiple measures of student achievement.
“The 2011-12 preliminary school report cards are a starting point for using multiple measures to evaluate our schools,” said State Superintendent Tony Evers. “The report cards will change over time as we add data to improve our accountability system, including more options for high school students to demonstrate college and career readiness. Already, I have called for the ACT suite, including the WorkKeys career readiness assessment, to be adopted for high school so we have growth measures and more robust data to use in future years. In addition, we will continue to gather feedback to ensure school report cards are understandable and useful in improving student achievement.”
School report cards provide an accountability score on a scale of zero to 100. Score ranges place schools in one of five rating categories, from significantly exceeds expectations to fails to meet expectations.
In this pilot year, 85.8 percent of rated schools meet or exceed expectations. Priority area scores are weighted in a formula that also takes into account student engagement indicators. Those indicators are test participation, absenteeism, and dropout rates.
The four priority areas are
• student achievement in reading and mathematics on statewide assessments using college and career-ready proficiency levels;
• student growth in reading and mathematics, measured by year-to-year improvements in achievement;
• closing gaps for reading and mathematics achievement and graduation, based on the performance of specific student groups (English-language learners, low-income students, students with disabilities, and students from racial or ethnic groups and their peers); and
• on-track and postsecondary readiness, which uses graduation or attendance rates, third-grade reading achievement, eighth-grade mathematics achievement, and ACT participation and performance as predictors of college and career readiness.
“These preliminary report cards provide valuable information for parents and educators as a foundation for helping all of our schools improve and I encourage looking beyond the score or rating,” Evers said. “Whereas, the majority of schools meet or exceed expectations, detailed report cards provide data that will help them get even better.”
Wisconsin issued 2011-12 preliminary report cards for 2,118 public schools, including 21 independent charter schools. Sixty-eight schools received an accountability index rating of significantly exceeds expectations. For the other rating categories, 637 schools exceed expectations, 906 schools meet expectations, 190 schools meet few expectations, and 76 schools fail to meet expectations. About 11 percent of schools (241) were not rated because they are new schools or alternative schools that are too small or lack sufficient assessment data to receive an overall accountability rating.
The annual school report cards were based on the work of the District and School Accountability Design Team and federal requirements. They were developed to be both informative and useful. For schools that meet few or fail to meet expectations, funding will be sought to develop a statewide system of support to provide resources for implementing reforms that help all students to graduate college and career ready. If funded, future plans also will include resources to disseminate best practices in schools exceeding expectations. When implemented, the statewide Student Information System (SIS) will provide more data on career and technical education coursework and certifications to expand career readiness measures.
The overall accountability score is not a percent correct. The four priority area scores are combined to determine an accountability rating. Scores in the four priority areas can be compared against the state average for similarly configured schools. Schools have a review period during which possible data-related issues may be presented to the Department of Public Instruction to adjust accountability scores or ratings.