Since 2012, ESD has published a comprehensive Scorecard intended for two primary audiences: 1) families, in helping them choose the best schools for their children; and 2) interested citizens, in holding schools and districts accountable to provide quality education. The Scorecard continues to provide interested stakeholders with objective measures of academic performance and school climate, informing local, state, and national discussions about Detroit schools.
Across three major revisions, the Scorecard has evolved from a simple list of ranked schools to a comprehensive A-F grading of Detroit schools. Ultimately, the ESD Scorecard has been rooted in six guiding values. The Scorecard:
- is comprehensive, including both qualitative and quantitative indicators;
holds all schools to high expectations (an A in Detroit is an A anywhere in Michigan);
is fair to schools by only holding them accountable for outcomes that they can control;
is accessible tool to parents, schools, and policymakers;
respects school autonomy by focusing on outcomes;
based on consistent and reliable multi-year measures to ensure fairness and fidelity.
The basic methodology of the ESD Scorecard has been unchanged since the 2015 version of the ESD Scorecard. For our K8 Scorecard (what we released today—we will release our High School Scorecard next month):
40% of the Scorecard grade is based on proficiency across four subjects (English Language Arts [ELA], Mathematics, Science and Social Studies), weighted equally;
40% is based on academic growth in two subjects (ELA and Math); and
20% is based on results from a research-based climate and culture survey.
For a more in-depth look at our Methodology, keep reading:
For the 2017 K8 Scorecard, we utilize the public use datasets published by the Center for Educational Performance and Information (CEPI) for proficiency rates and growth. These reports are available from mischooldata.org (specifically, the “Grades 3-8 Assessments” and the “Student Growth Report”). For our proficiency measures, we construct two-year averages based on the 2014-15 and 2015-16 M-STEP. For growth, we utilize the mean Student Growth Percentiles (SGP) for only a single year (2015-16, which measures growth from 2014-15 to 2015-16) because that is the only data currently available. In future Scorecards, we will construct a two-year average of mean SGP.
Note that the SGPs now published by CEPI are identical methodologically to the ones that ESD utilized in our 2015 and 2016 Scorecards. For the climate and culture survey, we use the highest “Category 5E” score of the 2015 or 2016 5Essentials survey.
Note that CEPI provides the proficiency data at the grade-level within each school and censors data where there are less than 10 students. We aggregate across grades within each subject to construct a set of four school-level proficiency statistics. Because of CEPI’s censoring, the school-level proficiency statistics that we report do not includes grades for which there were fewer than 10 students. As a result, some smaller schools do not have sufficient data to receive a grade on this year’s Scorecard.
To award points, we construct a point scale (0-10) for each component based on the oldest statewide distribution available (i.e., 2014-15 M-STEP for proficiency and 2015-16 for growth). We award 0 points for proficiency rates or mean SGPs in the 5th percentile and 10 points for those in the 90th percentile. We then distribute points 1-9 evenly throughout, rounding to the nearest hundredth for proficiency and integer for mean SGP. The following tables summarizes the K8 point scales (note: thresholds represent lower bounds):
Table 1: K8 Proficiency Point Scales
Table 2: K8 Growth Point Scales
ELA Mean SGP
Math Mean SGP
After awarding points to each component, we tabulate the percent of total points earned, which based on the average of proficiency points (40%), the average of growth points (40%), and the Category 5E score (20%). Finally, ESD then assigns a letter grade according to the following grade scale outlined in the following table.
Table 3: Overall Grade and Tier Scales
Percent of Total Points Earned
With respect to the performance tiers, Tier 1 schools are excellent performers. Tier 2 schools are above average performers. Tier 3 schools are below average and Tier 4 schools are weak. Both need to improve. Tier 5 schools are failing, which require immediate attention.
Every school receiving a C+ or higher earns an “ESD Recommended School” designation on our scorecard website. Because our point scales are constructed based on statewide distributions for each proficiency and growth measure, an ESD Recommended School (i.e., one that earns 50% or more total points) represents an above-average school in Michigan.