The Oklahoma Department of Education has released the A-F ratings for each Oklahoma school.Along with an increase in the number of As, the new grades show significant increases in the number of schools receiving Ds and Fs, state officials said. Of the more than 1700 schools rated under the program, 263 received Ds and 163 received Fs. "These are problems that need to be addressedcooperatively and with a shared sense of urgencyby lawmakers, administrators, teachers and parents," Gov. Mary Fallin said in a statement. "But before we can improve education, we need a system that accurately measures success and failure."The A-F grades delivered today provide that system. They give parents an accurate, easily understood method of measuring the quality of education their children are receiving. They also give teachers and administrators a benchmark to measure progress."Tulsa has 36 schools that received F grades.Tulsa Schools Superintendent Keith Ballard called these F grades "meaningless" earlier this week.At the board's State Superintendent Janet Barresi said, "If these administrators put that same degree of energy and enthusiasm into turning around their challenged school sites as they did in criticizing the grades, then I'm very optimistic about the future of these schools."Barresi said the A-F grades are meant to be understandable for parents and communities. She said they do not carry penalties."We are ready to work with Tulsa. We have been working with Tulsa on school improvement," Barresi said. She said Tulsa parents can use the grades as an opportunity to get involved in school improvement.Barresi said the grading formula is different this year. This year's grades incorporate students enrolled for the full school year and also includes more students with disabilities in mainstream testing rather than alternative testing. She said educator and superintendent feedback was included in generating the grading standards.The grading system is 50 percent student achievement, 25 percent overall student growth, and 25 percent bottom quartile student growth.Despite any possible criticisms surrounding the grading system, Barresi had praise for at least one Tulsa school."Just look at Will Rogers High School in Tulsa. Almost 80 percent of its test takers are eligible for free or reduced price lunches, but nearly 90 percent passed math and 87 percent passed English. Will Rogers received a B this year," Barresi said.About 17 Tulsa Schools received either an A or B.Continuing Coverage:Look Up Your Child's School GradeView Tulsa School Ratings from 2012 and 2013 Side-by-SideLearn How the A-F Grades Are Calculated
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