Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

October 9, 2012

TPS super questions viability of ‘report card’

TAHLEQUAH — All but one I-35 school scored a C in the state’s new A-F grading system, the Tahlequah Public Schools superintendent said Monday evening.

Superintendent Lisa Presley told board members and TPS employees the preliminary data shows Tahlequah High School scored a B, while all other sites were tagged with C’s.

Presley attended a state school board meeting Monday in Oklahoma City, where board members ultimately delayed a vote to release the first report cards of the system until Oct. 25. Hundreds of state school superintendents have criticized the way the system calculates average state growth.

“We’re not fearful of accountability; that is not the issue,” Presley said. “The issue is how the report cards are being calculated.”

Presley said the formula was not initially transparent, and school district employees from around the state became concerned when they tried to determine the process.

“The report card is 33 percent of overall school growth, school performance,” said Presley. “Seventeen percent is how much students grow overall. Another 17 percent is how the lowest 25 percent of your students grow, and the last 33 percent is whole school performance. ...”

Presley said the proposed system includes four performance levels: advanced, satisfactory, unsatisfactory, and limited knowledge.

“Limited knowledge and unsatisfactory are not proficient,” she said.

If students improve beyond one performance level and exceed the state average growth, the district gains a point, Presley said; if they improve on state tests, but don’t reach a new performance level, the district gets nothing.

“The state average growth is calculated based on only the students who grew. They do not include students who didn’t [improve] or students who stay flat or didn’t perform as well,” said Presley. “They didn’t include all students in the state-average growth.”

Presley, as an example, said TPS has a student who improved 19 points in one area, but the district garnered no points because he or she didn’t score the state average of 44, which Presley called “inflated [improvement].”

“This was not transparent to us; we didn’t know what they meant by state-average growth,” said Presley. “The state department’s argument wa it’s in the rules, it’s in the regs, but one of the state school board members said, ‘I’ve read them, and it is not clear to me.’”

Presley said the state board’s attorney suggested the vote on releasing the grades be tabled until later this month so officials can compare the difference between averaging only students who improved, and averaging all students.

Under the current data, Presley said 9 percent of Oklahoma schools were graded with an A; 48 percent with a B; 34 percent with a C; 8 percent with a D; and 1 percent with an F.

“The other thing the state is saying is [this system] is easy to understand; parents will understand it easily,” said Presley. “It takes a 28-page document to explain how they calculate it. The communications tool kit we got was not helpful; I’ll say it that way.”

Under the current grades given to superintendents, but not yet made public from the state, THS received an A in many categories, Presley said, but fell behind in a couple.

“When we get the calculations back, and we can start looking at who grew, who didn’t grow, and we’ll get a better feel of it,” she said. “What we are seeing from these grade cards is that reading pulls us down, and we invest a lot in reading, so that’s concerning to us. Growing our students is a concern also. We will, as always, keep working and keep creatively thinking about what we can do with our students.”

Click here to get the entire Tahlequah Daily Press delivered everyday to your home or office. Code for E-EDITION TRIAL OR SUBSCRIBE Click here to get a free trial or to subscribe to the Tahlequah Daily Press electronic edition.

It's the ENTIRE newspaper (without the paper) for your computer, iPad or e-reader.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • ths-jazz-2.jpg THS jazz band gets up early to hone performance skills

    It means getting up an hour earlier, and it doesn’t count as a class, but the jazz band at Tahlequah High School enjoys the dedication of a group of enthusiastic students.
    The THS Jazz Band practices every day at 7 a.m., an hour before the start of classes. It numbers 17, and is led by Director Orien Landis.
    “They have to do this before school and they get no class credit, but we have a full band,” Landis said. “They are really excited about this.”

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Easter-basket-kid.jpg Easter traditions date back centuries

    Some Christians may lament a partial shift of focus, but a Christian holy day - perhaps the most holy of all – is this Sunday, and it will be marked with celebrations all around the world.
    The Christian holiday of Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus. For centuries, the observant have fasted, reflected or done penance in the weeks leading to the holiday. But today, many also associate the holiday with the Easter bunny, candy, and kites. In 2013, Americans spent $2.1 billion on Easter candy.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Some oppose minimum wage hike; others decry strong-arming by state

    President Barack Obama and the U.S. Senate recently announced a push to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 per hour, to $10.10. On the heels of the announcement, an initiative petition was introduced in Oklahoma City to raise the minimum wage to the suggested $10.10. If it gained 80,000 signatures, it would be put to a vote of the people.
    This legislative session, a bill passed prohibiting municipalities from setting a minimum was or vacation and sick-day requirements. Gov. Mary Fallin signed the bill into law earlier this week.

    April 18, 2014

  • Phone scam takes $500 from couple

    Authorities are warning Cherokee County residents to watch for a costly phone scam that recently targeted a local couple and ended in their loss of $500.
    According to sheriff’s deputies, a couple contacted authorities after losing $500 to the scam. The couple received a phone call from a man who identified himself only as “Mr. Green.” He told the couple they had won $1.5 million through Publisher’s Clearing House, but to collect the money, the couple would have to purchase a $500 money card to cover various fees.

    April 18, 2014

  • Missing local teen found dead

    The body of a missing 17-year-old boy was found in southern Cherokee County on Thursday, sheriff’s investigators said.
    Brikk Pritchett was reported missing earlier this month after disappearing on March 30, a day before his 17th birthday.

    April 18, 2014

  • ts honor flight 1.tif Flight of honor

    World War II veteran Charles Harra flew missions for the Army Air Corps, and if you ask him which flight was his most memorable, he’ll say it was his 35th mission.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Man charged after leading authorities on wild chase

    Prosecutors have formally charged a man who allegedly led authorities on a wild high-speed pursuit across Cherokee County in late March.

    April 17, 2014

  • Sex offender bonds out after failing to register

    A Cherokee County man is out on bond after being arrested last week for failing to register as a sex offender.

    April 17, 2014

  • jn radiator shop.jpg ‘Greenbelt’ progressing

    Crews this week began to demolish an abandoned radiator shop at the corner of South Street and Guinn Avenue.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • ts slut walk.tif SlutWalk shines spotlight on crime

    “Two, four, six, eight, stop the violence, stop the rape; slut, slut, ho, ho, yes means yes and no means no!”
    This was the battle cry across the campus of Northeastern State University, as the student branch of the American Association of University Women held its third annual SlutWalk Wednesday.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

Poll

What to you think of a state Legislature proposal to forbid cities from raising the minimum wage? Choose the closest to your opinion.

The federal government should set the minimum wage across the board.
States should be allowed to raise their minimum wages, but not cities.
Both states and cities should be allowed to raise their minimum wages.
Cities should be allowed to raise their mimum wages, but not states.
There should be no minimum wage at all.
Undecided.
     View Results
Tahlequah Daily Press Twitter
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
Stocks