OK State Board of Education suspending school report card letter grades for 2020-21 due to disruptions caused by pandemic

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Oklahoma State Board of Education officials announced that schools’ report card letter grades will be suspended for the 2020-21 school year in consideration of the numerous disruptions to instruction caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister said the abrupt end of the 2019-20 school year and the tumultuous current school year made it necessary to “disentangle accountability from the administering of assessments this spring,” according to a State Board of Education news release.

“The reality of 2020 impedes our ability to provide the public with information that can be used to compare school’s progress year over year. We are committed to providing schools and the public with actionable, meaningful and transparent data – and that relies on credible trend data that can be used to make valid inferences about school quality and performance,” Hofmeister said. “Our priority is to now provide schools with as much information as we can on how students may have been impacted when compared to grade-level expectations, with an emphasis on the impact to students most at risk of falling behind academically.”  

Oklahoma students will still participate in federally required testing this spring.

Assessment results from those tests will not factor into report cards, but will shed light on how students have been impacted academically and the types of support they need, according to the news release.

Students receive assessments in English language arts, mathematics and science for grades 3-8, as well as the ACT or SAT to high school juniors.

The Board of Education also approved allowing districts to request a waiver to the qualitative evaluation portion of the Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (TLE) system. The TLE system’s professional learning requirement remains in place.

“COVID-19 has impacted accountability on many levels. Right now, districts are finding it challenging to complete the observations and evaluations,” said Hofmeister. “This optional waiver will relieve pressure on the districts as they navigate this pandemic and keep their focus on supporting students.” 

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