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UPDATE: W.Va. schools accountability system waived for 2016-17 school year

(WBKO)
Published: Nov. 16, 2016 at 9:05 AM EST
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UPDATE 3/8/17 @ 12:15 p.m.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The West Virginia Board of Education voted Wednesday to approve a waiver of a police to waive statewide accountability ratings for public schools in 2016-17.

As a result of the waiver, A-F grades will not be determined for the 2016-17 school year.

“The Board has listened to various stakeholders throughout the state, including educators, who overwhelmingly ask us to reexamine our statewide accountability system,” said WVBE President Tom Campbell. “We understand an accountability system is necessary, but want to take time to evaluate the best solution for our schools and communities.”

According to a release, the waiver puts West Virginia in alignment with the federal timelines outlined in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which requires full implementation of an accountability system by the 2017-18 school year.


UPDATE 11/16/16 @ 6:21 p.m.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The West Virginia Board of Education and West Virginia Department of Education released the results of their school accountability program Wednesday.

Six hundred sixty-eight public schools received letter grades of A to F to inform parents and to help schools improve from year-to-year.

But some say this accountability system is flawed.

"It doesn't accurately reflect how our schools are doing," West Virginia Education Association President Dale Lee said.

He says giving schools a failing grade might not help them improve.

Riverside High School in Kanawha County received an automatic failing grade.

The West Virginia Department of Education say they failed automatically because the school's testing percentage for the Smarter Balance test was below 90 percent.

Riverside Principal Valery Harper told WSAZ that she was not aware the entire school was included in the testing percentage. In previous years, only the 11th grade had to meet a 90 percent threshold.

In an appeal, Riverside said the Department of Education didn't do their part to inform educators of the change in policy.

That appeal was denied.

"Would it make sense if the Major League Baseball Commissioner makes a statement right now after game 7 to say the Cubs did not win the World Series because now every single member of the entire team has to bat?" Principal Harper wrote in a statement to teacher and parents at Riverside High School.

Riverside wasn't the only school to appeal. One hundred thirty-four schools tried to change their grade, and only 10 were granted a grade switch.

Cabell County Schools also sent out an automated message to parents about the grades.

The message urged parents to only see the grading system as a way that schools can get better.

You can find a complete list of the grades for every school here:


ORIGINAL STORY 11/16/16 @ 9:23 a.m.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) – The West Virginia Board of Education and West Virginia Department of Education released the results of their school accountability program Wednesday.

668 Public schools received letter grades of A to F to inform parents and to help schools improve from year-to-year.

According to the WVBE and WVDE, the schools will be held accountable for what is considered their core mission of increasing student achievement.

The grading system focused on four main parts; performance, improvement, persistence and post-secondary readiness.

The board considered grades of A, B or C to be acceptable.

563, or just under 85% of the schools evaluated received one of those three grades.

45 schools received an “A” rating, 162 schools got a “B” and over half of the schools graded, 356 received a “C.”

Schools that received a “D” or “F” rating will have one year to get their grades up or the state will get involved the second year, according to the board. The state will then assist in try to find ways to improve the grade of the school.

90 schools got a “D” rating and only 15 of the 668 schools graded received an “F.”

According to the board, Riverside High School received an automatic “F” because they did not test 90% of their students. They were the only school that were given an automatic “F.”

Schools got their grades about a month ago. According to the board, 134 schools appealed their grade and 10 of those schools had their grade raised by one letter. The state board says once they reviewed the information from the ten schools, they found they did in fact meet the requirements for the grade change.

Career and technical centers did not receive a grade along with schools scheduled to close.

Counties as a whole don’t receive a letter grade, but they do get an accreditation.

The school accountability system is required by the federal government.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin encouraged the WVBE to adopt policy that would assign the letter grad to public schools in 2014.

You can find a complete list of the grades for every school here: