The Ohio Department of Education released the 2014 local report cards for districts and schools across the state. Of significant importance is that the Department of Education has verified Columbus City Schools’ (CCS) data to be reliable and error-free. For the first time in years, CCS has an accurate baseline to use in developing appropriately targeted strategies for improvement. As an example that these new strategies are working, 88 percent of the District’s third graders were promoted into the fourth grade by the end of summer break. That’s up from only 43 percent in October!
This report confirms what we have known. While we have demonstrated gains in some areas, we still have a long way to go. At the same time, the standards are increasing, and the State Report Card format and criteria have changed. This year, the percentage needed in order to earn a progress indicator for grades three through 10 has moved from a 75 percent to an 80 percent benchmark. The report reflects both growth and our opportunities for improvement.
Teachers, principals, district leaders, and our community partners have all worked tirelessly to improve instruction for our students. The fact remains that we are taking a hard look at what is working, what is not working, and why. We are analyzing the data and focusing on providing individualized educational services to each student.
After analyzing the fall 2013 OAA Third Grade reading results, the District put together a literacy crisis team to develop and implement an aggressive and well-researched action plan. We are replicating these best practices to improve all students’ achievement. We launched several initiatives, including Reading Buddies, Books on the Bus, and the Family Literacy Academy, all of which were focused on improving third grade reading results.
We are determined to continue our intensive effort in third grade reading by expanding our focus to kindergarten through second grade. In fact, the progress the District has made in reading is a bright spot, though much of that progress occurred too late to influence the most recent report card. We have developed an effective strategic plan, one that includes a focus on each student’s individual needs. One that can be replicated for mathematics and reading in K-12.
We are very pleased with the results for our students with disabilities, as they were identified as making more than one year of progress during the last school. In addition, our five-year graduation rate demonstrates great persistence on the part of students and teachers. These are areas in which CCS will continue to focus energy.
We expect the community to hold us accountable for our progress, as it has done in the past. We will also hold ourselves accountable, and we will make no excuses.
When the District, in partnership with parents and community, takes collective responsibility for student learning and achievement, we will realize student success!
Columbus City Schools is encouraged and committed to providing a quality education for all of our students. We also know that we cannot do it alone. We need additional support and resources. Uniting resources and joining together as a community helped our third graders. Click here to view our Signs of Promise.
We hope you will join us this year, as we work toward making Columbus City Schools the . . .
Education Producer of Choice
Education Employer of Choice
Education Investment of Choice