The Ohio Department of Education released the annual Ohio Schools Report Cards to school districts last week for the 2018-2019 school year, and Buckeye Valley Local Schools received an overall “B” grade.
”I was pleased with the overall grade of a ‘B,’” said Superintendent Andrew Miller.
According to the report card, Buckeye Valley earned a “B” overall last year as well.
Miller said he is proud of the Buckeye Valley students and staff for their hard work in obtaining the grade.
“When you examine the report card in its entirety, I think Buckeye Valley continues to trend in a positive direction,” he said. “I feel really good about the progress measurer. It’s a ‘B,’ so it shows our kids are exceeding the measure set by the state. On average, they are growing more than in a year’s worth of time.”
Miller added he is also pleased with the progress in the “gap closing” metric.
“I think ‘gap closing’ compares some of the subgroups to the general population of the schools,” he said.”Some of our more at-risk groups are catching up. But, just like every year, there are still some areas that kind of make you scratch your head when you get them back.”
Miller said in those areas. he and the staff need to “dig into the metric a little more to find out why we’re falling short.”
“I feel good about it overall, but there are some areas that we can improve upon,” he said.
Kristine Michael, director of academic achievement, said the district missed the gifted indicator for the third time in a row, but she points out that there are very few districts that have met it all three years. She said she thought it was less than a dozen that have met the metric all three years.
However, Michael said she thought the overall progress shown in the report reflects the recent staffing changes the district has made.
The district received a “C” in Achievement, a “B” in Progress, an “A” in Graduation Rate, a “B” in Gap Closing, a “C” in Improving At-Risk K-3 Readers, and a “D” in Prepared for Success.
Miller said a decade ago, the state had a report card that everyone could understand but wasn’t as fair.
“Now I think they tried to develop a more fair report card so that every district can show what they can do, but at the sake of that it has made it more difficult to understand,” he said. “People that are in education, I think we even struggle with some of the measures.”
Miller, referencing the Prepared for Success metric, said he and his staff struggle with what it all encompasses at the high school, the middle, and the elementary level.
“In the K-3 Literacy, we had over 99% of the kids pass the third-grade reading guarantee, but on the other hand, we got a ‘C’ in that indicator,” he said. “It looks at a number of metrics kindergarten to third grade. With that one, I feel good at the end of it, because at the end of third grade, the kids are where they’re supposed to be.”
Miller said it takes time to dig through the report card to figure out the entire grade.
“Bottom line, the cumulative grade we try and put stock into that each year,” he said. “I think we’re doing well in that area, and we try to address the areas where there is a deficiency, keep moving forward, and keep improving on the areas that are already strengths as well.”
According to the Ohio Department of Education’s website, the report cards are designed to give districts, communities, and policymakers information on district performance and to identify success and areas for improvement. The goal of the report card gives equitable outcomes and expectations for all Ohio students.
Contact D. Anthony Botkin at 740-413-0902. Follow him on Twitter @dabotkin.