Standard of Excellence Awards

The KSDE has come out with more numbers on school performance.

1,172 schools (out of how many, we don’t know) were given a “building-wide Standard of Excellence award.” The award recognizes achievement in the categories of exemplary, exceeds standards and meets standards. (There are two other categories on the state assessment: approaches standard, and academic warning.)

To earn the building wide award, a school must meet certain criteria, which vary by type of school:

Elementary school: At least 25 percent of students must score exemplary. No more than 5 percent can be on academic warning.

Middle school: At leat 20 percent must score exemplary on reading and at least 25 percent must score exemplary on math. For both subjects, no more NO more than 10 percent of students can be on academic warning.

High school: 15 percent must score exemplary on reading and at least 15 percent must score exemplary on math. No more than 15 percent can be on academic warning.

Notice the the expectations go down as the grade level goes up. This is nothing new, but a sad commentary on the state of education.

The department also issues grade-level (e.g., 8th grade reading) awards to schools.

The department warns that since the assessments have recently been released, this latest batch of results cannot be compared with previous years: “Although state assessments have been administered for a number of years, comparisons between this year’s results and prior years do not produce reliable conclusions and would not be valid. This year Kansas students were given new assessment tests, developed from new State Board of Education approved curricular standards.”

For various reasons, the KSDE says that their reports are superior to those required under NCLB.

Source: Student Achievment Increases in Kansas, KSDE press release, December 12

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