Whitehall City Schools received an overall grade of D on state report cards issued Sept. 12 by the Ohio Department of Education.
The report cards rate the 608 public school districts in Ohio on their performance during the 2018-19 school year.
Whitehall’s D is the same grade it received for the 2017-18 school year. Districts and schools within a district were assigned an overall letter grade for the first time last year.
Superintendent Brian Hamler said although the state report card held no surprises, he was disappointed the district’s improvements didn’t warrant a higher overall grade.
“The results are about what we expected to see,” he said. “I was really pleased to see the district’s gain in the gap closing from a letter grade of a D last year to a B this year, (but) I was disappointed to see that the overall grade did not raise to a C.”
The overall grade is calculated using results in six components: achievement, progress, gap closing, improving at-risk K-3 readers, graduation rate and prepared for success, according to the ODE.
Districts also receive A to F grades on each of the six components and most of the individual measures, according to the ODE.
Each category is given a percentage weight when determining the overall grade.
They are 20% each for the achievement and progress components and 15% each for the remaining four components.
Whitehall scored its highest component mark, a B, in gap closing, an improvement from the D it received last year.
Gap closing shows how well schools are meeting the performance expectations of the most vulnerable students in English-language arts, math, graduation rate and English-language proficiency, according to the ODE.
Whitehall received a D in the progress component, lower than the B it was assigned last year.
The progress component looks at the growth all students are making in contrast to past performance, according to the ODE. It has four categories: progress for all students, progress for gifted students, progress for students with disabilities and progress for students whose academic performance is in the lowest 20% of students statewide.
In assigning an overall grade for the progress component, progress for all students is weighted at 55% and the other three measurements at 15% each.
Whitehall received a D in the graduation-rate component, equal to the grade received last year. It received a D for its five-year graduation rate and an F for the four-year graduation rate.
The district received a D in the achievement component, an improvement from the F it received last year.
The achievement component represents whether student performance on state tests met established thresholds and how well students performed on tests overall, according to the ODE.
Whitehall received a D in the improving at-risk K-3 reader component, equal to its grade last year.
The district received an F for the prepared-for-success component, also the same as last year.
Prepared for success looks at how well-prepared students are for all future opportunities, according to the ODE.
Hamler said he considers the state report card to be but one barometer of his district’s strengths and weaknesses.
“Whitehall appreciates the Ohio Department of Education’s effort to provide districts with another measure of students’ academic performance, (and) we will use this data, along with the many other sources of data, to continue to strive to create success through personalized learning for every student, every day,” he said.
====2019 state report cards: central Ohio school districts