Johns, Waldron, Blancett to Study A-F Report Cards in Public Schools
A bipartisan interim study to examine the value of A-F report cards when rating the quality of public schools across the state has been scheduled for Monday, October 2. The meeting is a joint study by Reps. Ronny Johns, R-Ada, John Waldron, D-Tulsa, and Meloyde Blancett, D-Tulsa, and will overview the A-F report card program. Presenters will discuss how absenteeism affects the schools' grades, the pros and cons of the bell curve system, the current systems used for Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) compliance and school evaluation, and explore alternatives to existing methodologies. "I believe the A-F report card is a useful tool that gives a good overall picture of what's going on in our schools and the great job our educators are doing," said Johns, a former middle school principal. "One area of particular concern is the bell curve system we currently have in place, which severely limits schools' ability to improve their grade score even if they show vast improvement. I hope this study provides valuable information that we can use to begin considering what system best serves students, parents and teachers." Speakers include Michael Tamborski, Program Manager over Data Quality and Research in the State Dept. of Education Office of Accountability, who will provide an overview of the A-F report cards; Dr. Jeanene Barnett, Education Policy and Research Analyst, Cooperative Council for Oklahoma School Administration (CCOSA), who will detail what other states have done as alternatives to the A-F report card system; and Sandra Valentine, formerly with APlus, who will explain the A-F report card scoring process. “The study seeks to update and improve our system of school assessment by looking at alternative models that can add value to our understanding of school performance, and point the way to improving student learning,” said Waldron, a former public school teacher. Also speaking to the committee will be Bixby Public Schools Superintendent Rob Miller, Stillwater Public Schools Superintendent Uwe Gordon, and Stillwater Public Schools Board Member Marshall Baker. The study, which is open to the public, is scheduled for Monday, October 2 at 1 p.m. in Room 206 at the Oklahoma State Capitol. The meeting will be held before the House Common Education Committee and will be live-streamed at www.okhouse.gov .