We recently received our School Performance Profiles for the 2016-2017 school year. I thought I would take a moment to explain the scores and how this school “report card” will be changing next year.

In the annual assessment, each school receives a score up to 100 based heavily on standardized testing, while also considering student improvement over the previous year, graduation rates and other factors. The scores for our elementary schools and middle school primarily reflect the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA), while the high school’s score is chiefly based on the Keystone exams. According to LancasterOnline, academic ratings fell at a majority of the schools in Lancaster.

Historically, CV students do well when compared with other similar districts. In the 2017 SPPs, our schools all scored a 70 or higher, with several buildings seeing improvements from last year – including at Fritz Elementary, which saw a 11.6-point increase in their score! The buildings that saw their scores decrease from last year did not see a drop bigger than 3.1 points. You can look to see more detailed reports by clicking here.

While we are proud of CV’s academic performance, it’s important to recognize that these SPP scores do not give a complete picture of the success of our students. That’s why we, along with other local educators, are looking forward to Pennsylvania’s new system to score schools called the Future Ready PA Index. The Index will replace the SPP next year.

The Future Ready PA Index will give a more well-rounded picture look at schools’ performances. The system will take into account additional factors such as career readiness indicators, the number of students taking Advanced Placement or dual enrollment courses, and chronic absenteeism in addition to standardized test scores.

While I am pleased by our performance on the standardized tests, ultimately, there is no single way to measure student success. Our goal as educators is to ensure that students are receiving a quality education that prepares them for success after school, whether they choose a college or career pathway. That’s why our focus will continue to be on every child, every day learning the skills they need to thrive in the 21st century.

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