Comments on the Pending Wisconsin School Report Cards

The Madison School District (160K PDF)

New benchmarks for proficiency. Starting in 2012-13, the benchmark for determining proficiency on the WKCE in math and reading will increase. New cut scores are being developed based on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), which is conducted in a sample of schools every other year in Grades 4 and 8.
This higher cut score will result in a large number of students that will no longer be identified as proficient or advanced. This will be true at the state and local level. Recent coverage in the Wisconsin State Journal indicates that using NAEP-based cut scores causes the percent of Wisconsin students identified as proficient or advanced to decline from 81.9% to 35.8% for reading and from 78.0% to 48.1% for math.
The move toward NAEP-based cut scores is in part preparation for the statewide shift to Smarter Balanced Assessment in 2014-15. Results for individual schools using this new benchmark will be released this fall.
Accountability School Report Cards. Information packets from DPI provide context and formatting examples of the report cards that each school will receive to track its performance against various criteria.
Embargoed draft versions of school report cards will be shared with districts around September 24. Report cards for individual schools for 2011-12 will be finalized and made public around October 6.
Attached is an example of a school report card for a middle school. The report cards apply to all elementary, middle and high schools. Criteria are broken out by racial/ethnic, disability, income and ELL subgroup. More detailed “technical report cards” will also be prepared for each school that will go into more detail and methodology of the calculations.
The criteria for the Accountability School Report Card follow:

Watch a Madison school board discussion, starting at about 15 minutes.