INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — About 60 percent of Indiana public and private schools
earned A’s or B’s for student progress during the 2011-2012 school year,
while about 150 schools received failing grades that could eventually
position them for state takeover unless they improve, state education
officials said Wednesday.
The State Board of Education voted unanimously to approve the grades for
public, charter and private schools across the state.
The grading system, which awards marks of A through F, is based largely on
student standardized test scores, graduation rates and college and career
readiness. Critics have argued that the rules used to come up with the
grades are unfair and inaccurate.
Education officials said eight schools that received F’s for the 2010-11
school year got A’s last school year, and overall 43 schools improved by at
least three letter grades. Twenty-eight schools that earned failing grades
for the 2010-11 school year earned C’s or higher this year, officials said.
More than 200 schools earned A’s for the first time this year.
The state hired private companies last year to take over four schools in
Indianapolis and one in Gary following six consecutive years of poor student
scores. One of those schools, Broad Ripple Magnet High School for the
Performing Arts in Indianapolis, was given a B this year.
Officials said there were no schools marked for takeover this year.
Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett said this year’s grades
showed the new rules, which place a high premium on schools’ academic
improvement, worked despite criticism.
“The results of our new approach to grading schools are already making a
measurable difference in student performance,” Bennett said in a statement.
Indiana received a waiver from certain provisions of the No Child Left
Behind Act from the U.S. Department of Education in February. The changes
allowed under that waiver helped many schools that had previously repeatedly
received C’s, officials said.
Grades for the Duneland School Corporation’s nine schools:
•Jackson Elementary: A (2011—A; 2010—A).
•Brummitt Elementary: C (2011—A; 2010—B).
•Bailly Elementary: B (2011—A; 2010—A).
•Liberty Elementary: C (2011—A; 2010—B).
•Yost Elementary: C (2011—A; 2010—A).
•Liberty Intermediate: B (2011—A; 2010—A).
•Westchester Intermediate: A (2011—C; 2010—A).
•Chesterton Middle: D (2011—A; 2010—B).
•Chesterton High School: A (2011—C; 2010—D).
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The Democrat running against Indiana’s top schools
official is calling for an independent audit of the state grades of public
schools’ annual progress.
Glenda Ritz says the grades approved by the state board of education
Wednesday don’t truly measure individual student achievement. She calls the
measuring system “artificial.”
Ritz is challenging Republican Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony
Bennett in the Nov. 6 election. Bennett says the grading system is fair.
About 60 percent of the state’s nearly 2,100 public schools received A or B
letter grades for student progress in the 2011-12 school year. None of the
schools is positioned for a takeover by the state because of repeatedly poor
grades. Last year, the state took over five schools that had years of poor