Grove City Record

SWCS officials anticipating best school report card from state

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Preliminary data for the State Report Card the Ohio Department of Education will release later this week has officials expecting unprecedented results for the South-Western City School District.

The data will show that more South-Western students are passing more tests at higher levels, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum John Kellogg told the school board Sept. 24.

The preliminary data the ODE will release by Sept. 30 will include Ohio Achievement Assessments and Ohio Graduation Test results and information regarding districts' adequate yearly progress and value-added growth, Kellogg said.

While the information the state will be releasing will not include performance index data, earlier indications were the district will earn its highest-ever performance index score of 95.1, an increase of 1.2 points, he said.

The performance index measures student performance on state tests.

South-Western is also expected to meet 20 and the 26 indicators on the report card, an increase of two and again the highest number the district has ever reached, Kellogg said.

The data will also show improved performance of student groups, he said.

A number of initiatives at district schools have helped improve the district's performance on the State Report Card, Kellogg said.

The board heard reports by staff members from six schools on their initiatives and the impact the programs are having:

* Galloway Ridge Intermediate School Principal Mimi Padovan reported on a literacy collaborative effort at her school that includes the use of coaches.

Reading scores in both fifth and sixth grades have improved over the last three years, with an average gain of 5.6 percent in fifth grade and 9.5 percent in sixth grade, she said.

* Brook Park Middle School Principal Neil Britton reported that the use of math coaches for students has led to an indication that the school will reach the state standard of having 75 percent of its students pass the math test in both seventh and eighth grades.

* Central Crossing High School Principal Jill Burke reported on the use of teacher collaboration teams at her school. The teams have established measurable goals that are attainable and result-oriented. As a result, indications are the school will see improved scores on state tests in every subject, Burke said.

* Franklin Woods Elementary intervention specialist Kristen Millett and math teacher Kerri Peachock reported on their co-teaching partnership, in which they do parallel teaching that includes special education students in regular classroom settings.

That means a lower student-teacher ratio, Millett said. The result is a 20 percent increase in the passage rate on the state math test over the previous year.

* Grove City High School teacher Patricia Weethee reported on the methods of technology enhanced instruction she uses in her accelerated chemistry and Advanced Placement biology classes.

* North Franklin Elementary Principal Elaine Lawless discussed how teachers' focus on understanding and applying common core standards to prepare students for college and the workplace has led to ongoing professional development.

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