The Duncan Banner

Education

October 28, 2012

Labyer gives feedback on A-F grading system

DUNCAN — Duncan Superintendent Sherry Labyer admits to being disappointed with the grades given by the Oklahoma State Department of Education to some of the Duncan schools. But Labyer said it’s the A-F grading system itself she has a problem with, not accountability.

On Thursday, the Oklahoma State Board of Education approve the A-F grading system, which gave each school in Oklahoma a letter grade, as if receiving a report card. In Stephens County, most schools received an A, B or C, although there were three that received D’s.

“I’m disappointed the State Board of Education went ahead and followed through with approving the grading system,” Labyer said. “It’s not because we’re afraid of accountability. It’s because of the complexity of it.

“It counts our lowest quarterly students three times, and only counts our upper quarterly students once. I don’t think that’s a fair representation of our student achievement.”

Two Duncan elementary schools (Mark Twain and Woodrow Wilson) received D grades on their report cards. Most other Duncan schools received B’s from the State Department of Education.

The grading system has been a controversial item, even within the State Board of Education. The state school board tabled the item Oct. 8 to continue discussions about the grading system, which was then approved Thursday with a unanimous vote.

Labyer said some of the grades were disappointing, but the school district would continue to strive for excellence in student achievement.

“We’re going to continue to keep our focus,” she said. “We won’t let this deter us. We want to make better grades, but we want to make meaningful better grades.”

She said the school district will continue to introduce more science, technology, engineering and math into the schools. And staying with the Career Pathways program the school district is piloting, Labyer expects schools to work toward having students college and career ready.

Labyer wants to increase parent and community involvement in the schools. By increasing community involvement, she’s hoping to make a stronger run toward student success in the classrooms.

“I want to see what we can do as a community,” Labyer said. “We’re not focusing on the grades. We’re focusing on student achievement.”

When it comes to discussing the grades given by the State Department of Education, Labyer welcomes parents to visit with her and other administrators.

“The grades will be transparent,” Labyer said.

Schools are ready to improve their scores, but Labyer isn’t sure how easy the process will be.

Labyer said state uses the PASS Objectives standards for student achievement, but the national and local standards are Common Core Standards, which the school district will fully adopt by 2014.

“I have some concerns,” Labyer said. “The tests aren’t the same. I don’t know how it will impact student achievement. Common Core is a better measure. It’s teaching to mastery.”

Despite being disappointed with the grades and the use of the grading system, Labyer said the school district welcomes accountability, as long as it’s an accurate representation of the schools and the district.

“Most superintendents in Oklahoma are not afraid of accountability,” Labyer said. “We’re just asking for a straight forward accountability system.”

1
Text Only
Education
  • Wal-Mart to cut prices more aggressively in back-to-school push

    Wal-Mart Stores plans to cut prices more aggressively during this year's back-to-school season and will add inventory to its online store as the chain battles retailers for student spending.

    July 22, 2014

  • A quarter of the world's most educated people live in the 100 largest cities

    College graduates are increasingly sorting themselves into high-cost, high-amenity cities such as Washington, New York, Boston and San Francisco, a phenomenon that threatens to segregate us across the country by education.

    July 18, 2014

  • College graduates are sorting themselves into elite cities

    Census data suggests that in 1980 a college graduate could expect to earn about 38 percent more than a worker with only a high-school diploma. Since then, the difference in their wages has only widened as our economy has shifted to bestow greater and greater rewards on the well-educated. By 1990, that number was about 57 percent. By 2011: 73 percent.

    July 11, 2014

  • How professors are using Facebook to teach

    Technology is an established part of the lives of students. But university lecturers are becoming increasingly frustrated at how they must compete with tablets and laptops for students' attention in the lecture hall.

    July 11, 2014

  • New York to offer free lunch to all middle-school students

    New York's $75 billion spending plan for the fiscal year that began last week includes the first step toward offering free lunch for all 1.1 million students, expanding a program now reserved only for the city's poorest children.

    July 9, 2014

  • Survey shows colleges flouting sexual assault rules

    More than 40 percent of 440 colleges and universities surveyed by Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., haven't investigated a sexual assault in the past five years, according to a report released Wednesday.

    July 9, 2014

  • School storm shelter petition raises budget questions

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma budget writers say an initiative petition to install storm shelters and safe rooms in every Oklahoma public school could overstress the state's biggest and most critical revenue fund and slow the flow of tax dollars for vital public services.

    For the second time in less than a year, a group known as Take Shelter Oklahoma is collecting the signatures of voters to put the issue on a statewide ballot.

    July 6, 2014

  • Avoidable injuries are killing too many young Americans

    Not so cheerful news before your holiday weekend: Some sobering new government numbers show just how many young people die from injuries that could have been avoided.

    July 3, 2014

  • Study: Kids gain weight more quickly over summer break

    Any parent or teacher can tell you that schoolchildren tend to slip back a bit academically over the long summer break. But now a Harvard University study has come up with troubling indications that they also gain weight more quickly during those months when, traditionally, we hope they're outdoors much of the time, enjoying the summer sun.

    June 18, 2014

  • screenshot starbucks.jpg Starbucks to pay part of college tuition for US store workers

    Starbucks, which has offered company stock for store workers for more than two decades, will now begin picking up most of the college tab for its employees.

    June 18, 2014 1 Photo

Poll

Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
Yes. More shoppers would come during nice fall weather.
Either time is fine.

     View Results
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.