2017 State report card released; Euclid Superintendent discusses improvements

Posted at 7:00 PM, Sep 14, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-14 19:00:19-04

On Thursday, the Ohio Department of Education released its annual report card for schools in the state.

Some districts continue to excel, while others question why they received the grade they did.

To view your school’s report card, click here.

News 5 talked to the Charlie Smialek, superintendent of Euclid Schools. He said these report cards are focused on academics and can be one-sided.

“The state report cards are absolutely frustrating for us,” Smialek said. “Research shows grades correlate largely to zip codes and to judge a school district based on this one measure is not a complete assessment.”

Smialek talked about the strengths of his school district, which are not measured on the report cards.

“We have great athletic programs; we have an arts program that are the envy of other school districts,” Smialek said. “Our biggest strengths really come in the early-learning area and come in the area of career tech programs in our high schools.”

The report card measures academic achievement, graduation rate, literacy and preparation for success in the workforce and progress.

 “Our progress component grades are a mystery,” Smialek said. “You look at our progress component grades, or value added grades in recent years, we were always exceeding expectations, and then two years ago we had ‘F,’ last year we had an ‘A,’ this year we have ‘F.’

Smialek said more transparency is needed for the progress component of the state report card.

“School districts don't change course that dramatically in one year’s time,” he said.

On the Ohio state report card, Cleveland, East Cleveland and Euclid were listed as the lowest performing districts in Cuyahoga County, along with Maple Heights, Richmond Heights and Warrensville Heights.

Solon, Beachwood, Rocky River and Brecksville were rated as the highest performing districts.

Smialek admits Euclid has work to do.

“Our student achievement grades are not something we're going to excuse,” Smialek said.

The district is working on various ways to encourage students to be more engaged in class, he said.

“One of the avenues we're taking is to have an ‘Always a Panther’ program,” said he, “We're trying to get community mentors for our students.”

The superintendent said he will be attending a meeting with other districts next month to discuss ways to possibly improve the state report cards to better represent urban school districts.