State Board Continues The A-F School Grade Debate
October 15, 2014 — State Impact Indiana’s Rachel Morello reports.
INDIANAPOLIS – The State Board of Education voted Wednesday to delay approving letter grades for schools because members said they were unsure about the underlying data.
The decision came after two school administrators complained about the appeals process for their grades and board members learned that the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency has not finished running the numbers, a process meant to verify the Department of Education results.
“I see somehow a lack of leadership, a lack of detail, that places us” in a bad situation, said board member David Freitas, who was addressing state Superintendent Glenda Ritz and her staff at the Department of Education.
“You have not provided us some of the key ingredients to make an intelligent decision,” Freitas said. “We need to ensure the data is accurate.”
Ritz, who chairs the education board, said later she had also sought to delay approving the grades until the legislative agency had finished its work. But she didn’t say why the issue landed on the agenda anyway. The board voted unanimously for the delay.
The board plans to reconsider grades at a meeting Nov. 5 when Ritz said the data issues should be resolved and the LSA review would be completed.