State tries to improve its rollout of school profiles
Almost a year since the state bungled its disclosure of school performance profiles, Pennsylvania lacks an official release date for its latest batch, Department of Education spokesman Tim Eller said on Friday.
“We're thinking late September, but we won't have anything set in stone for at least another week,” he said.
Last year, Acting Education Secretary Carolyn Dumaresq twice delayed the debut of the state's reporting website — paschoolperformance.org — because 20 percent of the state's 3,000 schools complained data were incorrect or incomplete and could reflect poorly on students and the schools they attend.
The rollout drew intense scrutiny and criticism.
Nearly every high school in the state asked the department to suppress some portion of the profile in its initial release because thousands of students, proctors and administrators failed to check a box on the newly adopted Keystone exam.
Eller said that won't happen again.
This year, teachers and students no longer had to check that box. Schools ordered two versions of the same exam — those counting for course credit and those meeting federal requirements. Students took the tests in the spring.
Districts have the next week to report any inaccuracies before contractors start updating the content online.
Results from 2013 show nearly 73 percent of public schools received a 70 or higher on a 100-point scale.
School Performance Profiles, the model approved to replace Adequate Yearly Progress goals mandated by No Child Left Behind, incorporate the results of statewide assessments, student academic growth from year to year, graduation rates, attendance and performance rates, and the academic progress of historically underperforming students such as English language learners and those from low-income households.
Gov. Tom Corbett in February proposed linking district profile scores to millions of dollars in state grant money, but that gained no traction in the Legislature.
Going forward, state officials will score schools individually. Tabulating district scores is too big an expense for very little gain, Eller said.
Megan Harris is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach her at 412-388-5815 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.