The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

March 12, 2014

Principals address Miami School Board after test scores drop

MIAMI, Okla. — Seven of the Miami School District’s principals addressed issues inside their schools at a school board meeting Monday night, in the wake of lower evaluation scores from the Oklahoma State Department of Education.

Department of Education guidelines are used to evaluate student assessment scores and placement scores, attendance rate and dropout rate, in addition to an improvement rate. Of the district’s eight schools, only Rockdale Elementary School, Washington Elementary School and Miami High School scored above a C on the state’s A-to-F grading scale. No school received a failing grade on the evaluation.

School board President Harley Turner said that while the scores were lower than the 2012 scores from the state, the problem does not necessarily lie within the schools themselves.

“There is concern on our level, and there isn’t,” he said. “There isn’t a lot of intervention time with the grading system criteria from the state, and the guidelines have changed every year, and I’m sure they will change next year. That can lead to some misleading looks. We only know what we are being evaluated on after the fact.”

The Department of Education switched to its current grading system in 2012. The 2013 guidelines included a major change to the school improvement category that eliminated parent and community engagement in addition to a climate survey in favor of splitting the grade evenly between performance and growth.

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