The percentage of students who were economically disadvantaged increased in 13 of 16 Franklin County school districts from school year 2009-2010 to 2014-2015. Six districts had rates over 50 percent: Columbus, Groveport Madison, Hamilton, South-Western, Whitehall, Reynoldsburg. The Groveport Madison school district experienced the greatest increase in economic disadvantage among its student body, 14 percentage points. Whitehall experienced the greatest decrease in economic disadvantage, 17 percentage points.
KidsOhio’s new report, “Understanding Career Education Options for Columbus Students,” reveals that half of juniors and seniors enrolled in a career program are engaged in one of seven programs: engineering science, health science, performing arts, job training coordinating, visual design, media arts and business management. The other half are divided among 30 other programs ranging from precision machining to cosmetology.
One of 37 career programs, Job Training Coordinating, was designed specifically for students with special education needs, equipping them with soft skills and basic job skills. The program served 97 juniors and seniors.
When Job Training Coordinating was factored out of the equation, the rate of students with special education needs among career education students enrolled in the other 36 programs dropped to 17 percent, which is slightly lower than the rate for all juniors and seniors (18 percent).
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Only 1 in 16 adults in the Columbus City Schools district voted in the May 2015 primary, according to a new KidsOhio.org report. That means 94 percent of adults did not vote for any of the school board candidates who will appear on the Nov. 3 general election ballot.
Those numbers have important ramifications for schools and the students who attend them, said Mark Real, KidsOhio.org president and CEO.
“The Columbus Board of Education oversees a taxpayer-funded budget of more than $1.4 billion,” Real said. “It sets education goals and policies and approves programming for more than 50,000 children.”
Additionally, the board monitors academic progress and operations among the district’s 110 schools and is responsible for hiring and evaluating the superintendent, internal auditor and treasurer.
“And yet only a tiny fraction of adults are engaged in electing school board members,” Real said.
Within the Columbus City Schools district, 40 percent of adults are not registered to vote and 54 percent are registered but didn’t vote in the May primary.
“In fact, more than a half-million adults didn’t vote in the last primary,” Real said. “I doubt that the vast majority of residents are aware of this. Our hope is that by educating the public about the importance of school board elections and highlighting how few people have been engaged, we can motivate more people to vote on Nov. 3.”
Eight school board candidates will appear on the Nov. 3 general election ballot, and voters will elect four. The KidsOhio.org report lists candidates in alphabetical order and provides links to candidate information. It also provides information about how to register and vote this fall.
KidsOhio.org will make the nonpartisan report available throughout the community and can customize it with the logos of additional organizations that want to distribute it to their constituents.
KidsOhio.org was created in 2002 in response to community, education and business leaders who wanted an effective, data-driven, nonpartisan organization focused on improving public education in Ohio. The organization is funded by the private sector and does not accept any government monies or contracts. KidsOhio.org’s mission is to improve the education of Ohio’s nearly 3 million children, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds.
This fact sheet provides eight key facts about each of Columbus’ 20 “Parent Trigger” schools with a link to each schools’ improvement plan. Click here to read the fact sheet.
Columbus City Schools and the Ohio Department of Education have entered into a first-of-its-kind agreement to improve services for children with disabilities. Read a copy of the signed 21-page agreement detailing their joint work here.
In addition, KidsOhio.org has prepared this two-page fact sheet, “Students with Disabilities in Columbus, Ohio,” which provides an overview of the 8,249 students who comprise one in six members of the student body in Columbus City Schools.
In this report titled, “Three Columbus City Schools Earn All As and Bs on State Report Card,” KidsOhio.org details successes achieved at Columbus Alternative High School, Eastmoor Academy and Centennial High School. All have poverty rates ranging from 55 percent to nearly 70 percent, but economically disadvantaged students at these schools are consistently beating the odds on the state’s 10th grade math and reading tests.
KidsOhio.org interviewed principals at all three schools to understand why these schools are achieving high marks. The principals most often cited these factors: • A clear goal of preparing all students for college • Long-serving teachers and principals • Expectations that parents will be engaged in their students’ education • Positive peer pressure among students to achieve academically • Parental choice to enroll students in these schools • Strong relationships among students, teachers and principals.
Full Report: Understanding Ohio’s New Third Grade Reading Guarantee Law
Press Release: Understanding Ohio’s New Third Grade Reading Guarantee
Data Supplement: More Information about Your School District or School
Ohio’s new Third Grade Reading Guarantee law requires third graders in public schools – both district and charter – to achieve a specified score on the state reading test in order to advance to the fourth grade. To provide community leaders with meaningful information about the 5,500 third graders in Columbus district and public charter schools, KidsOhio.org has prepared the report, Understanding Ohio’s New Third Grade Reading Guarantee.
The report provides the rates of third graders scoring at each of the five performance levels on the fall 2013 test in every Franklin County school district, in each of the Ohio Urban 8 school districts, in 74 Columbus City Schools, and in the 39 Columbus-based brick and mortar charter schools. For context, the report also provides the rates of economically disadvantaged third graders, students learning English as a second language and students with disabilities.
The report found:
- While more than 42 percent of Columbus third graders scored high enough on the October 2013 reading test to be promoted to fourth grade next fall, 58 percent have up to two more chances this spring or summer to score high enough to be promoted.
- More than 20 percent of Columbus City Schools third graders scored at the two highest of the five performance levels, but more than 49 percent scored at the lowest level.
- Among the 16 Franklin County school districts, Columbus City Schools had a higher rate of students scoring at the top performance level than Whitehall. However, that rate was lower than each of the county’s 14 other school districts.
- Among third graders in Columbus-based public charter schools, over 18 percent scored at the highest two performance levels while 47 percent scored at the lowest level. The report also includes a sample reading passage and test questions, answers to frequently asked questions about the new Third Grade Reading Guarantee law and interviews with Columbus City Schools and public charter school leaders about what they are doing to help students improve their reading skills.
Click here to read a one-page summary documenting that both types of Columbus public schools, district and charter, have high percentages of economically disadvantaged students and students of color.
Columbus district schools: State Report Card Grades for 115 Columbus City Schools Buildings, 2012-2013 School Year
Columbus public charter schools: State Report Card Letter Grades for 60 Columbus-based, Brick-and-Mortar Charter Schools, 2012-2013 School Year