Other Measures of District Performance
One important indicator of district performance is the proportion of students judged proficient on Ohio’s accountability tests. As in other states, Ohio accountability tests are changed periodically, and these changes can affect proficiency rates. For the purpose of this case study, the percentage of proficiency for the district as a whole is calculated by averaging all of the district’s available proficiency rates (i.e., percent proficient) on accountability tests.
Over the five-year period from 2012-13 through 2016-17, Gibsonburg’s overall accountability test scores declined, from 85% proficient in 2012-13 to 63% proficient in 2016-17. The greatest decreases in percentage of proficiency over the five years occurred at the seventh and eighth grade levels, where average proficiencies went down about 30 percentage points (88% to 58% proficient in Grade 7; 71% to 38% proficient in Grade 8). The 2016-17 averaged grade-level scores range from eighth grade’s 38% proficiency to third grade’s 80% proficiency.
Despite Gibsonburg’s five-year declining trend, which parallels the trend statewide, the district’s overall accountability test scores exceeded state averages to a modest degree. The Ohio district average (of all available scores) for 2016-17 is 59%, whereas the Gibsonburg average is 63%. In other words, Gibsonburg’s accountability test scores are close to the average for the state of Ohio. Accountability scores and ODE “grades” correlate with local median incomes very strongly statewide, and demographic data indicate that the median family income in Gibsonburg is close to average. Although the district received an “A” for progress from the ODE, it received a “D” on achievement and an “F” on achievement gap-closing.
Graduation rates are another typical indicator of school outcomes. One accepted standard for calculating this statistic is to determine the proportion of entering ninth-grade students who graduate four years later. For the five school years from 2011-12 through 2015-16 Gibsonburg’s rates have been consistently high, increasing from nearly 89% in 2011-12 to above 95% in 2015-16. In 2015-16, about 16% of the graduates were Hispanic and 81% were White. The percentage of graduates who were Multiracial is unknown because the ODE does not report percentages for subgroups with fewer than 10 members. The district received an “A” for graduation rate from the ODE in 2016-17.
Data from the ODE can be used to infer whether Gibsonburg’s Hispanic and White students graduated in proportion to the enrollment each year of Hispanic and White students in their grade-level cohort. This calculation is not entirely accurate because the ODE data show the proportions of enrolled subgroups in the high school as a whole, which may not be the same for each of the high school’s respective grades. The inferences based on the available data for 2011-12 through 2015-16 indicate that the percentage of Hispanic students who graduated is greater than the percentage of White students, for all years except 2012-13.