The Ohio Department of Education has revealed its report-card results from state assessments during the 2016-17 school year.
Earlier today, the six component grades and information on each component were posted at education.ohio.gov/Topics/Data/Report-Card-Resources. Worthington's report card is at reportcard.education.ohio.gov/Pages/District-Report.aspx?DistrictIRN=045138.
District leaders spoke about preliminary results Sept. 11.
Superintendent Trent Bowers said after seeing the early returns, Worthington Schools "showed improvement in every graded area," although parents will not see all A's on the report card.
"Our district, just like hundreds of others across the state, is feeling the effects of a system that has changed the way it measures proficiency," he said. "No matter what grade the ODE provides us on an indicator, we'll never be satisfied. Our goal is to continually improve and see Worthington students succeed at higher and higher levels."
Based on preliminary results, composite grades on the 2016-17 report card are expected to include A's for progress (the value-added measurement) and graduation rate, but the district received C's for achievement, K-3 literacy, preparation for success and gap closing.
Value-added measurements look at the growth all students are making based on their past scores on the state tests, said Angie Adrean, the district's chief academic officer.
She said the district has much to celebrate, including the value-added A grade.
"We improved in 19 of the 23 achievement indicators, with an average gain of 4.6 percent," Adrean said.
The K-3 literacy component improved by 11 percent," she said. "We believe this is due to our district focus around the use of informational text and writing across all content areas, to make thinking visible."
That component measures achievement by kindergarten through third-grade students and includes the Ohio Third-Grade Reading Guarantee.
Bowers said Worthington students continue to achieve at high levels when compared to most students across Ohio.
"On average, Worthington achieved 17 percent higher than the state overall," he said.
But that's not enough, he said.
"We have a lot of advantages in Worthington and our students should achieve above state average," he said.
Adrean said the report card should include improved scores for student subgroups for the gap-closing component, from a dismal F on last year's report card to a C this year.
Bowers said district leaders are focusing on four strategies to continue to improve student achievement: creating a culture of empathy and support; encouraging the development of skills in reading informational text; developing writing skills; and increasing the level of cognitive rigor of instruction across all levels and areas of content.
He said those four strategies are at work in every Worthington classroom.
"We feel like we're absolutely on the right track with our students," he said. "If the state keeps the standards and assessments consistent year after year, we believe we will continue to see increased student growth and achievement."
Adrean said parents must realize "the ODE report card is one piece of evidence to help us reflect and engage in productive discussions and continue to move us forward in the work of our improvement plans and the growth and achievement of all students – academically, emotionally and socially."
She said one of the expectations for district teachers is "be kind to kids," and it is listed as the first and last of the expectations to emphasize its importance.
"We believe strongly in and value the importance of building trusting relationships with our students and our colleagues in order to promote academic achievement," she said.