Westerville News & Public Opinion

Preliminary report card puts more feathers in district's cap

District expects a new record performance index score and to keep its Excellent with Distinction ranking


Official State Report Card data may be late and an official score for the district may be missing, but incomplete results released last week by the Ohio Department of Education provides more positives for Westerville City Schools 2011-2012 performance.

In addition to listing the district's performance on state standardized tests in spreadsheet format, the preliminary Report Cards released by the state Sept. 26 revealed that the district met adequate yearly progress and value-added measures.

"We did receive some additional good news," said district Chief Academic Officer Karen McClellan. "We have more of our elementary students this year meeting (adequate yearly progress), considerably more, than the prior year. That's a real celebration. We continue to look at all of those achievement gaps."

Still missing from the report card are the district's overall rating, how many state indicators the district met and the district's performance index, a number indicating how many students performed at advanced or accelerated levels on standardized tests.

The district previously estimated its performance index at 102.9, which once again would be a record high for the district. Last year's performance index was 101.9.

It's unknown when the district will see its final official State Report Card results.

The state chose not to release records on time in August because of a state investigation into several districts -- not including Westerville -- falsified attendance records in reports to the state.

The lack of Report Cards has not interfered with the district's ability to home in on subject areas to focus on for professional development and student intervention, McClellan said.

Each year, the district looks at Report Card data to determine which subject areas are weakest and should be the point of focus for professional development days and in the classroom.

The district has had its testing results to be able to examine that data, McClellan said, though the district was eager to receive its adequate yearly progress and value-added measures to help determine how different subgroups of students were progressing.

"We have the data by content area, by grade level and by the standards. We can still do the 'data dig' to identify relative strengths and weaknesses across the standards," McClellan said. "We want to look at how all our various subgroups are doing and are we closing those gaps, so we were all eagerly waiting the (adequate yearly progress) and the value-added."

McClellan said the data also show that the district once again should be proud of the work that's happening within its schools.

"That's a celebration of what's happening in our classroom," McClellan said of increased student performance.