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Are some area schools making grade?

In the “Our opinion: Cyber schools drain resources” (April 5) I was kind of amazed with the heavy-handed language. I mean, how hard would it have been to get the actual data from local schools in the district vs. local children in cyber school? What oddly stuck out to me was the inference that all 126 students were all lacking in education, as if you had certifiable local data, but instead you used a 2019 Stanford Study and cited WCSD officials saying cyber charter schools only graduate at 58%.

So, I have questions: 1) As an editorial taking such a stand on charter schools are you forgetting the Sheffield is/was at the bottom 15% of state testing? 2) What should be done about public schools in the district failing to meet up to state standards? 3) Are they a drain on resources? 4) When county school district officials state cyber charter schools only graduate 58% of students, is that number based off of state-wide data or county data? 5) Inside that 58% how does it break down according to population/county/demographics?

While doing the research for this letter, I went to the Pennsylvania Department of Education ACT 82 School Performance Profiles from 2019 scores were as follows: Beaty-Warren MS 59.3, Eisenhower Elementary 66.7, Eisenhower MS/HS 63.1, Sheffield Elementary School 62.8, Sheffield Area MS/HS 59.5, WAEC 70.6, WAHS 73.0, YEMS 53.9, YMHS 64.7.

The following statistics are from the future ready PA index:

When it comes to the averages of proficiency/advanced testing for the English language and arts the state average is 62.1% and the 2030 goal is 81.1%. The following statistics are the percentage of student proficiency for each school:

1) WAHS 72.2% 2)YMHS 62.0% 3) TCCS 61.1% 4)EMHS 59.3% 5)SMHS 56.8%

WAHS and TCCS were the only schools in the English Language Arts/Literature to have all student group meet interim goal/improvement target.

When it comes to the averages of proficiency/advanced testing for mathematics/algebra the state average is 45.2% and the 2030 goal is 71.8%. The following statistics are the percentage of student proficiency for each school:

1) WAHS 63.5% 2) YMHS 62.5% 3) EMHS 39.6% 4)TCCS 35% 5)SMHS 27%

WAHS and YMHS were the only two schools in mathematics/algebra to meet the interim goal/improvement target.

When it comes to the averages of proficiency/advanced testing for science/biology the state average is 66% and the 2030 goal is 83%. The following statistics are the percentage of student proficiency for each school:

1) TCCS 64.0% 2)WAHS 62.5% 3)YMHS 60.4% 4)EMHS 61.4 5) SMHS 44.7%

TCCS was the only school to meet interim goal/improvement target

When it comes to the averages of attendance levels, the state average is 85.7% and the 2030 goal is 94.1%. The following statistics are the percentage of attendance levels for each school:

1) EMHS 78.2 % 2) WAHS 75.5 3) YMHS 74.4 4) 73.5 5) TCCS 75.3

When it comes to the averages of graduation rates, the state average is 86.5% and the 2030 goal is 92.4%. The following statistics are the percentage of graduation rates for each school:

1) TCCS 95.2% 2)EMHS 92.4 3)WAHS 90.8 4)SMHS 81.4 5)YMHS 80.6

In closing, while I can appreciate the stance of “cyber charter schools to be held to the same educational standards as their brick-and-mortar peers – or else have the plug pulled” maybe we should take an hour or two, do a little research and see where the schools in our district actually are in comparison to what the state standards are. Do not forget, there are many reasons why kids are enrolled into cyber schools and that because depending on what cyber school you are looking at demographics and grades can be disparate.

I would like to know how attendance rates are so low. Is it a combination of parents not making sure kids are getting up for school and truancy officers not communicating this to the parents/guardians?

There is definitely causation to correlation when you are missing that much school.

Since some of our local schools are clearly not meeting the standard, should we pull the plug on some of them and finally consolidate some schools together, especially when you look at the finances and see that the increase in spending over time in our district is not equaling the academic proficiency. Maybe it is time to hold school board members accountable?

Rob Marrone is a Warren resident.

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