Ohio School Report Card grades for all the state’s districts were released this week. And though the scores of districts in Clinton County weren’t high, local educators welcome receiving the data to interpret while also sounding a common theme that the grade provides an incomplete picture.
The overall district grade for Clinton-Massie is a C, while the other three public school districts in the county received overall D’s.
Wilmington City Schools (WCS) Superintendent Mindy McCarty-Stewart stated Friday, “With the most recent State Report Card being released, it is important to remember that our students and staff are more than a score. We are a school community that values student learning, staff professional learning, relationships and making real connections with one another.”
She added, “Our graduates go on to do amazing things in the work, career, and military fields. We have alumni all over the world, as well as here in our community, making a difference. Wilmington City Schools District is a great place to work and learn. Our students are surrounded by a community who cares and supports all learners. Wilmington is so much more than a score on a report card could ever measure.”
The WCS superintendent listed 11 additional measures that she said tell the WCS story.
Some of those are embracing and celebrating the district’s diversity; all teachers are trained on using the framework for Universal Design for Learning — presenting lessons in varied ways to reach varied learners; WCS’s elementary teachers are supported by expert coaches in literacy and math; all staff is trained on being a Trauma Responsive School; WHS students have access to a variety of educational pathways to meet their individual needs; a tradition of offering strong and reputable performing and visual arts programs; and very active and involved students engaging in service and community-oriented clubs and activities.
Clinton-Massie Superintendent Matt Baker sent the following reply in response to a News Journal email request for a comment or two highlighting his thoughts on the district grade card.
“Clinton-Massie Local Schools is extremely proud of the amazing work that happens every day in and out of our classrooms. Our selfless staff works tirelessly to serve our students and community with a student-centered focus. The release of the 2019-20 Ohio School Report Card provides us with an opportunity for reflection and includes some valuable information but this data only represents one measure of student performance.
“There are many wonderful things happening at Clinton-Massie on a daily basis that will never appear on a report card. Clinton-Massie prides itself on providing a high-quality, well-rounded education and we will continue to focus on meeting the needs of each of our students while preparing them for their bright futures,” stated Baker.
East Clinton Superintendent Eric Magee emailed the following statement:
“The release of the report card always provides many data points to analyze and then use to make decisions as we progress. We will spend time over the next several weeks and months drilling down through all of this data to determine what we are doing well and where we need to make adjustments.
“As a district, over the past several years, we have dedicated extra resources to the elementary levels in hopes of building fundamental pieces that we can then grow throughout all levels. This report card reflects many positive gains at these fundamental levels,” said Magee.
“Both elementary buildings received an overall grade of a B. Lots of work by every employee has provided for these gains. That continued work is underway at all levels. Our students are taking pride in their work. It is a great time to be an Astro,” the EC superintendent stated.
Raechel Purdon, curriculum director of Blanchester Local Schools, said that as a district, they believe the value of the education students are receiving at Blanchester schools goes far beyond what Ohio scorecards state.
“However, it is nice to analyze the data released within the Local Report Card to drive improvements in our instruction and to celebrate successes contained in the six categories of this document,” said Purdon.
Purdon told the News Journal that, while they aren’t pleased with the overall district grade, there are several areas they’re excited to see student growth occurring.
“As a district, the Graduation Rate score increased from a B to an A with 96.1 percent of students graduating within four years. Blanchester High School met the most Achievement indicators in Clinton County, and had the top scores in the county in five tested subject areas,” she said.
She noted that Blanchester also exhibited some major leaps within the District Gifted Indicator and met two out of three components this year, only coming up two points shy of meeting all three components.
“We were also elated that 100 percent of our third-grade students met the requirements of the Third-Grade Reading Guarantee for promotion to fourth grade,” she said.