Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization
July 21, 2015
OSSE Draft Parent Reports
Gwen Rubinstein with OSSE, and Steve Cartwright, a contractor for OSSE, shared drafts of reports being designed for parents to help them understand their child’s test results under the new Partnership for Assessment for Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) tests. Ms. Rubinstein explained the test results from school year 2014/2015 will not be available till the fall of 2015. There were many comments about the draft report including:
- Because it is anticipated test scores will drop under PARCC when compared with the DC CAS, some explanation about the differences in the two test results is needed;
- The range for the test scores is between 500 and 580, and it is not clear why the scores are in this range as opposed to 0 to 80, for example;
- It was suggested that the words describing the level of understanding, e.g., moderate understanding, be more prominent rather than performance level, e.g., Level 3, and the overall score, e.g., 556 which have little meaning to parents;
- The term “distinguished” understanding is likely not to be understood;
- When it says “David is growing slower than other students at the same level of prior achievement,” is this a comparison within the individual school or a system-wide comparison, or a comparison across states?
- The term LEA is not familiar to most parents; and it isn’t clear what it means on the draft report
- The comparisons between the overall score that is on a scale of 500 to 580 and the English Language Arts Scoring Categories (reading is out of 60 and writing is out of 40) is confusing;
- Under the questions to ask your child’s teacher there are a series of suggestions related to what the parent can do to support the child’s learning. Equally important to know is what support is being provided by the school to help the child obtain a proficient or above level;
- Under the section that describes what the child needs to improve his knowledge and skills, some of the language is likely not familiar to parents, e.g., “…writing prompts.”
We invited Ms. Rubinstein to come back to the September CHPSPO meeting to share the revised reports.
Faith Hubbard, State Board of Education (SBOE) Student Advocate
Ms. Hubbard explained her position is a newly legislated role that was created in the Student and Parent Empowerment Act. While the position is within the SBOE, it is independent of the SBOE. Ms. Hubbard sees the role as open-ended right now. The role is designed to look out for multiple interests of families, and work to help families navigate the system. Ms. Hubbard sees her role including being a resource for individual parents.
Ms. Hubbard described two projects she is actively working on and/or exploring:
- Providing parent leadership and advocacy training. This program has been successful in Connecticut (http://www.cga.ct.gov/coc/plti.htm), and has worked well in other cities.
- Creating a website with information on the District’s school governance structure, and a broad array of education resources.
Ms. Hubbard also described how the Ward 5 Education Council operates (Ms. Hubbard was the president of the Ward 5 Education Council prior to her appointment as the Student Advocate. The Ward 5 Education Council was established in 1985, and Ms. Hubbard got involved in the Council a few years ago. The Ward 5 Education Council has a president, 1st VP, 2nd VP, 3rd VP, Treasurer and Secretary.
Visits to City Councilmembers at the Wilson Building
Ivan Frishberg discussed scheduling another round of visits to the Wilson building to meet with City Councilmembers. We discussed continuing a focus on school modernizations. There was support for scheduling the meetings in September.
Walk-to-School Day, October 7
The following people volunteered to help plan Walk-to-School Day:
- Danica Petroshius – Lincoln Park permit
- Suzanne Wells – Capitol Hill Community Foundation mini-grant
- Erin Roth and George Blackmon – bag donations
- Shahna Gooneratne – DC Water (bottles and Wendy the Water Drop)
- Beth Bacon and Sandra Moscoso – Line up speakers
- George has already confirmed the Maury cheerleaders will perform
- All schools are encouraged to register at www.walkbiketoschool.org