“We’re back baby!”
Or so you could imagine the elation from Park City School District Administrators on Park City’s recent ranking in US News’ top High Schools. No longer relegated to unranked status, Park City High School is now ranked 2nd in Utah and 418th nationwide.
Earlier this year we had written Why we care and don’t care about Park City School Rankings. We said we don’t care “because we have a district that seems to educate children well. We have good teachers. We have small class sizes (our student to teacher ratio is 19:1 while Skyline’s is 25:1 for instance). Whether we are ranked or not, it doesn’t change that.” We said we do care because the rankings factor in whether we educate ALL children — especially English Language Learners and disadvantaged students.
What these ranking tell us is that in 2014 and 2015 the school district did pretty well, because that’s where this year’s ranking come from. Even more, it tells you that starting in the 2011-2012 school year things were getting better. (Wow, that’s a long time ago).
Because US News doesn’t publish detailed data, it’s hard to get into details. However, we would be remiss if we didn’t point out the SAGE results during this same time period (2014-2015):
- 24% of English Language Learners (ELL) were proficient in Language Arts in Grade 3 (that’s one of the better ones)
- 23% of economically disadvantaged kids were proficient in science in 5th grade
- 4% of ELLs were proficient in language in 7th grade
- 0% of ELLS were proficient in language in 8th grade
- 14% of disadvantaged kids were proficient in math in grade 5
- 11% of ELLs were proficient in language in. 5th grade
- 24% of Economically disadvantaged students were proficient in language in 6th grade
So, we’re not exactly sure we want to be celebrating that.
That said, for those who crucified our Superintendent for falling out of the rankings, she had been vindicated. The rankings are coming around. Again, the rankings are a couple of years behind. However, logic would dictate that next year’s rankings (based on 2015-2 016) would be even better due to dual immersion efforts. So, if you care about rankings, you will likely be happy for the next few years.
Since we don’t, what we really hope is that our school district continues to work to provide a quality education for ALL our students. We’d really like to see our ELL and economically disadvantaged students on par with other students.
That would be a big win.
For now, we’ll congratulate our School District on working hard to meet one of its goals. Kudos.
Yet, there is a lot of work still to be done.