Last Tuesday, it was schools’ turn to get their report cards, as the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) released them for the 2012-13 year. 

The report cards graded school districts on the students’ state test scores (grades 3-8 and 10 on the WKCE test), closing achievement gaps, college-and-career readiness indicators, and other data, based on their performance and of all children attending the district.

Schools were given a score from 0-100 and one of five ratings, from fails to meet expectations to significantly exceeds expectations. This was the second year for school report cards. New this year, districts were also given a report card to see how they measure up. 

“The report cards offer a starting point for schools and districts to plan improvements,” State Superintendent Tony Evers said in announcing the report cards. “Additionally, they show how we can continue to refine Wisconsin’s accountability system to truly serve the education community, parents, policymakers and the public.”

The new accountability system is Wisconsin’s answer to the federal No Child Left Behind Law, which Wisconsin received a federal waiver to drop. This system will be in place for one more year before a new, in-depth measure of student ability debuts for the 2014-15 year. 

For the second straight year, the top school in the county was Spring Valley High School. They finished with an 83.3, which placed them in the significantly exceeds expectations category, the only Pierce County school in that range. All the other schools met or exceed expectations.

The high school did well in three key areas, leading to the high score. Last year’s sophomores placed well above state averages in the reading and math categories on the WKCE test and the Class of 2013 had a high graduation rate.

Meanwhile, the middle school (66.4) and elementary school (69.8) both met expectations. District-wide, Spring Valley finished with a 69.5, which also met expectations. 

For more please read the Sept. 25 print version of the Herald.