Michigan Making Changes to Add Clarity to School Ratings System

Friday, May 11, 2012

Parents would get clearer information about the quality of schools under a change state officials are making to revamp the school report card system.

The Michigan Department of Education, as part of a request to waive some of the rules of the federal No Child Left Behind Act, had planned to create scorecards for each school that would assign green, yellow or red ratings based on how well the schools met academic goals.

But under that system, most schools would be rated yellow -- meaning they had met most of the goals, but not all. And a coalition of groups said in a letter to state Superintendent Mike Flanagan last week that most schools in urban areas such as Detroit would receive red ratings, meaning they hadn't met most or any of the goals.

"This ... would give parents little to no differentiated, understandable information by which to make high-quality, thoughtful school placement decisions for their children," the coalition said in the letter.

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