Sunday, September 9, 2012

A-F School Grading System Rollout Set For Early October

State Department of Education - In 2011, the Oklahoma Legislature adopted an A-F School Grading System to provide incentives to schools for challenging all students to reach high levels of college and career readiness. The new A-F report cards will make school performance clear in a transparent manner easily communicated to the public.

The new report cards will also give schools a tool to encourage more parental and community involvement. It’s just common sense that schools with higher levels of parent and community involvement have a better chance of succeeding. When parents and community members have a clear understanding of school performance, they can also help in tangible ways.

Schools will still be examined for helping their children meet grade-level performance standards, but the grading system also adds the dimension of allowing a school to show academic growth. A school’s grade also will include factors such as graduation and dropout rates, and attendance rates for elementary schools.

Perhaps most importantly, the new A-F grading system will replace past systems that were too complicated for most parents to understand. With this important reform, we’re empowering everyone — whether school administrators, parents, classroom teachers or citizens — to make informed choices and to identify ways to strengthen and improve all of our schools for the benefit of each student in Oklahoma.

The State Department of Education has compiled a new guide booklet on the A-F Report Card system. This new guide walks administrators and educators through the major components that determine a school’s letter grade — student performance, student growth and whole school performance. The guide also includes a number of in-depth items, such as calculation scenarios, information on bonus items and more.

Report cards will contain information that, depending on the school, may demonstrate success in one or more specific areas even if the school receives an overall lower letter grade.

The State Department of Education is already working to provide resources designed to assist schools that receive a lower letter grade. 

A-F School Grading System report cards will be released in early October along with the launch of a website providing public access to school grades.

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