Novemeber 2, 2011
The first round of student report card pick up begins morrow and today for CPS Track E schools where parents will also receive a report card on the progress of their child’s school. This is the first time parents will have access to this level of transparency and detail on school performance that will serve as a tool to empower them to have meaningful dialogs with principals and teachers about their child’s performance.
CPS CEO Jean-Claude Brizard met with parents of students in CPS schools throughout the summer to gain their feedback on what should be included in the school progress reports. These reports tell the story of a school’s performance by providing information about key indicators including academic performance, teachers and staffing, school culture and climate, and parent satisfaction. The progress reports provide easy-to-read charts on each indicator that synthesize data on graduation rates, student and staff attendance rates, student-teacher ratios, school safety, and the percentage of students at grade level in reading and math, among other factors. All school progress report cards for CPS schools are also available online.
“Parents are key partners in our effort to support principals and teachers in helping to boost student performance. We want to provide them with access to data on performance in a clear and understandable way,” Brizard added. “This information will help engage parents and better prepare them to have a meaningful dialog with teachers and principals about their child’s education.”
The progress report cards look beyond the traditional metric of Illinois Standards Achievement Test (ISAT) data to tools that better gauge college readiness. Instead, parents will find information on the percent of students who perform at grade level compared to their national peers, based on the growth assessments CPS implemented district-wide in 2010. The progress reports also show the percent of students keeping pace academically compared to their peers nationwide from the beginning to the end of the school year.
In eighth grade, CPS administers EXPLORE, an assessment of college readiness that demonstrates what percentage of students is graduating from an elementary school are prepared for high school. These results are also included to help measure student academic performance within elementary schools.
In addition, CPS is providing parents with a report on the performance of students in the early elementary grades in both literacy and math. Student progress in pre-kindergarten through second grade is crucial for ensuring that students are successful later in elementary and high school, which is why the district has placed an emphasis on providing opportunities for preschool and full-day kindergarten citywide.
At the high school level, student progress will be measured in three distinct ways:
- Student Progress toward College Readiness: This includes reporting the average ACT score for our juniors. This test score is an important part of each student’s college application and students need a score of 21 or higher to have a good chance of success in their college courses. In addition, reports use data from freshmen and sophomore scores on EXPLORE and PLAN, which gauge college readiness.
- College Eligibility: In addition to the high school graduation rate, CPS is also reporting a college eligibility rate. This rate is based on the combination of ACT scores and GPA seniors must achieve in order to be eligible for enrollment for a selective or highly selective college.
- College Enrollment: CPS is also reporting the college enrollment rate. This represents the percentage of seniors who enroll in a two- or four-year college the fall after high school graduation.
The culture and climate of schools will also be measured within the school progress report. Both student and teacher survey results helped to provide information on a variety of factors including family involvement, supportive environment, ambitious instruction, effective leaders and collaborative teachers. Over time, researchers at the University of Chicago have established that schools that score strongly on these measures are much more likely to improve academic achievement for their students. Student safety measurements include input from these surveys and are also highlighted in the progress report.
In addition, parent survey results for each school will include both parents’ perceptions of school engagement and the quality of the school environment. This feedback, as well as the data provided within the entire progress report, is intended to spark conversations between parents and school staff on how to build a stronger learning environment to meet student needs and boost student achievement.
All school progress report cards for CPS schools are also available online at www.cps.edu under the Schools tab. Parents can enter the name of their school and scroll down to the attached documents to download or view the School Progress Report Card in English or Spanish.
Chicago Public Schools serves 405,000 students in 675 schools. It is the nation’s third-largest school district.