Superintendents Look For Better Evaluation System

By
Cheri Russo

Dateline
Updated Wed, Aug 24, 2011 10:00 am

Athens City Schools Superintendent Carl Martin says 20 percent of his students have an identified handicap and 35 percent are economically disadvantaged.

These are reasons he says it isn't right to compare his district to one in an urban setting in the state school report cards.

"All schools are different.  And even though we're judged on the same criteria, our student populations and our communities are different," said Martin.

Martin's district got an "Excellent" rating on the 2010-2011 report cards.

So did Rob Walker's district.  He is the superintendent of the Lancaster City School District in Fairfield County.

Walker says he's a big supporter of accountability.  But, he thinks there might be a better way to do it.

"I think we're always looking for improvements and something better.  I'm a big proponent of accountability because one of the things that I think we all know is that this accountability is really focused on every child," said Walker.

Both Walker and Martin say that they aren't sure labeling school districts with ratings is the right way to approach it.

"I certainly think its unfair to put labels on districts," said Martin.

Walker said, "I'd like to see something better and I'd be interested in seeing what options they're investigating at the Ohio Department of Education to include in that rating system."

Both superintendents say they are also interested to see what will happen on a national level with federal education guidelines.  The federal goverment is considering changes to the sometimes controversial No Child Left Behind Act.

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