CPS rated as 'effective' by state

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The Ohio Report Card has rated Cincinnati Public Schools as 'effective' for the second straight year, district officials announced Wednesday.

"We are extremely excited to repeat this accomplishment because it means that our students progressed at a greater rate than the state as a whole," said Superintendent Mary Ronan. "We attained Effective status through the Ohio Department of Education's (ODE) Value-Added Measure, but, this year, the state raised the bar and made it more difficult to achieve."

The district announced its results at a news conference on Wednesday. The results are considered unofficial until the ODE releases statewide data on Wednesday, Aug. 24.

CPS previously learned that students' test scores rose on all 24 tests administered by the state over eight tested grade levels, but actual district and school ratings were not available until the state calculated the its value-added growth measure, by which it assesses whether students make, exceed or do not make a year's worth of projected learning growth.

Ronan praised schools for their strong showings in moving up in the ratings, resulting in more CPS schools in the higher report card categories and fewer in the lower two. In the latest ratings, more than 82 percent of CPS schools are rated Excellent, Effective or in Continuous Improvement.

In particular, she singled out the performance of the district's Excellent and Effective-rated schools. Excellent schools include College Hill Fundamental Academy, Covedale, Dater Montessori, Fairview-Clifton, Kilgour, Mt. Washington, Sands Montessori, the School for Creative and Performing Arts, Taft Information Technology High School, and Walnut Hills High School. Rated Effective are Hartwell, North Avondale Montessori, Sayler Park, Silverton, South Avondale, Aiken College & Career High School, Clark Montessori, Hughes STEM, Western Hills University High School and Withrow University High School.

Again this school year, formerly low-performing schools made significant gains that helped lift the district as a whole, including most of the 16 schools identified for comprehensive support through the district's Elementary Initiative. Four of these schools – Mt. Airy, Rothenberg Preparatory Academy, South Avondale and Taft Elementary – were completely redesigned with new staffs and revamped curriculum in 2009 and 2008.

"What is particularly striking about these results is that every single one of the redesigned schools has made impressive progress," Ronan said.

Other CPS Report Card Highlights include:

  • The district's Performance Index, a composite score of gains on all state tests at all performance levels, has reached 87.3, its highest score ever
  • The district has earned 10 Report Card indicators compared with seven last year
  • The percentage of student proficiency rose on every state test at every grade level by an average of 5 percent

Ronan said her goal for the 2011-12 school year is to "take these results to the next level" by beginning the transition to new, more rigorous academic standards designed to prepare students for the demands of the 21st century.

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