OSBA: Report cards confirm link between income, grades

By Ryan Ottney

August 23, 2013

Ryan Scott Ottney

PDT Staff Writer

The new report cards for schools and school districts were made available Thursday, and the Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA) say analysis of those report cards confirm research that shows income and poverty have a direct correlation to student performance.

Among the 135 school districts above the state average income of $51,626, 91 percent scored an A in the letter grade of standards met category, while just 41 percent of the 474 districts below the state average income received an A. Among the 360 districts with student poverty levels less than the state average, 74 percent earned an A, while only 20 percent of the 249 districts with poverty levels higher than the state average received an A.

Unlike prior years, the revamped report cards assign A-though-F letter grades to schools in nine different categories, which range from graduation rates to achievement gaps to student performance on state tests. Instead of ratings such as “excellent with distinction” and “continuous improvement,” schools and school districts ultimately will receive overall letter grades. They will not receive overall letter grades until 2015; the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) is still developing how the scores will be calculated.

Ryan Scott Ottney can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 287, or rottney@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Ryan on Twitter @PDTwriter.