State House Sound Bites

Capitol reporter Katie Meyer covers Pennsylvania politics and issues at the Pennsylvania state capitol.
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Proposal would give schools letter grades

Written by Mary Wilson | May 27, 2013 4:35 AM

(Harrisburg) -- A state House proposal aims to make the state attach a simple letter grade to each school and school district in the commonwealth.

The A through F grades would be based on data that’s already being collected.

National education reform organization StudentsFirst supports the proposal.

State director Ashley DeMauro says the report cards would be based on student and teacher performance, relative progress, and things like attendance and graduation rates.

"At this point, when we say how well a school is performing, we generally just go to the PSSA or the Keystone results and say, here are the student achievement results, and this is how well a school is performing," DeMauro says. "I think a measure like this that includes multiple measures provides much richer and more well-rounded view of a school's performance."

The Pennsylvania School Boards Association suggests it's unnecessary based on work the state's already doing.

A state Department of Education spokesman says the agency will review the proposal.

The state will roll out website this fall designed to provide numeric scores to each school and school district based on measures similar to those outlined in the letter grade proposal.

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