For the second year running, South-Western City School District earned an "excellent" rating on its state report card.

For the second year running, South-Western City School District earned an "excellent" rating on its state report card.

On its report card for the 2009-2010 school year, the district met 13 of 26 indicators.

This year, it met 18 of 26 indicators.

"The indicators are finally reflecting the continual improvements we've made over the last decade," said Superintendent Bill Wise.

Ranging from lowest to highest, state report card designation levels include "academic emergency," "academic watch," "continuous improvement," "effective," "excellent" and "excellent with distinction."

The Ohio Graduation Test, Ohio Achievement Assessment, attendance and graduation rates are all factors included in the assessment.

Performance index, which reflects the achievement of every student enrolled for the academic year, also is included, said Patrick Gallaway, media relations coordinator at the Ohio Department of Education.

The district also earned a performance index score of 93.9, an all-time high.

Though the report card includes a more rigorous calculation of the "value added" criteria, extra measurements granted to districts, Wise said he was pleased with the results.

The "value added" criteria determine whether students learned, on average, a year's worth of material, said Assistant Superintendent of curriculum John Kellogg.

A district could either meet the criteria, or score below or above the criteria.

By scoring above the criteria, the district bumped its overall rating up from "effective" to "excellent."

The district didn't meet its adequate yearly progress for the third year in a row.

The federal government breaks the student population into nine subgroups that are rated in reading and math, Kellogg said, and sets performance targets for each subgroup.

For the last two years, the district has missed the performance target for the special education subgroup.

Still, Kellogg said the district is much closer to meeting that target than it was in the past.

The district is using a method of co-teaching in some classrooms, where a general education teacher is assisted by a special education teacher in instructing a student population of both special education and general education students.

"You're giving them the same learning experience," he said, saying the more rigorous curriculum makes for better performance.

The district didn't meet the graduation rate requirement, one of the 26 indicators, this year or last year.

While the state standard is 90 percent, the district scored an 88.5 percent.

Some students get disenfranchised, a small population doesn't pass the Ohio Graduation Test, and others are credit deficient, Kellogg said.

District high schools are focusing on making sure students pass the Ohio Graduation Test, a graduation requirement.

They are also putting emphasis on ninth-grade students' performance.