NYC Public School Report Cards are Out

Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott has released the sixth annual Progress Reports for more than 500 New York City high schools, transfer high schools and Young Adult Borough Centers. The reports award letter grades to schools based on student progress toward graduation, performance on standardized tests and coursework, and student attendance, as well as surveys of parents, students, and teachers about their schools. For the first time, the reports measure how many students in each high school take and perform well in advanced courses, graduate ready for college, and enroll in a college or other postsecondary program. As in previous years, schools received additional credit for progress made with students with disabilities, English language learners, and black and Hispanic males who entered high school struggling academically.

“Our high schools play an important role in student outcomes beyond K-12,” said Chancellor Walcott. “By measuring how well our schools prepare students for college and careers, the Progress Reports shine a light on the importance of increased rigor as a bridge to future success.”

“Our high schools are rising to the challenge of more rigorous standards and diploma requirements,” said Chief Academic Officer Shael Polakow-Suransky. “The Progress Reports show that more students are taking rigorous courses in high school and graduating ready for college.”

Although individual schools’ grades were generally stable, 7 percent more high schools earned As and Bs and 4 percent fewer schools received Ds and Fs compared to last year.  The average score increased by 1.8 points, as over 5,000 more students received Regents diplomas.  This year, 34 percent of high schools, transfer high schools and Young Adult Borough Centers received an A, 38 percent received a B, 21 percent received a C, 5 percent received a D, and 2 percent received an F. In 2011, 33 percent received an A, 32 percent received a B, 24 percent received a C, 8 percent received a D, and 4 percent received an F. Other highlights include:

  • 142 schools received an A, 159 schools received a B, 88 schools received a C, 21 schools received a D, and 10 schools received an F.
  • 95 new schools, schools that did not yet have a graduating class, and schools phasing out received reports with no grades.
  • Grades remained stable for individual schools, as 95 percent of schools maintained the same grade or changed by one grade from 2011; 99 percent of schools were within two grades from 2011.
  • Among all City schools that received grades this year, including early childhood, elementary, K-8, middle, high, District 75, transfer schools, and Young Adult Borough Centers, the grade distribution was: 28 percent As, 36 percent Bs, 28 percent Cs, 6 percent Ds, and 2 percent Fs.
  • New high schools opened since 2002 and charter high schools continue to outperform other high schools, and the trend is more pronounced when comparing schools with unscreened seats. This year, 34 percent of high schools with unscreened seats that opened in 2002 or later received an A, compared to 22 percent of schools with unscreened seats opened before 2002.

For the first time, readiness for college and careers is included in the score and grade.  This new section is comprised of three metrics: students passing rigorous college preparatory courses in high school (College and Career Preparatory Course Index), students graduating who have surpassed the threshold for college remediation according to the standards set by the City University of New York (College Readiness Index), and students enrolling in college or other postsecondary institutions (Postsecondary Enrollment Rate). In addition, schools earn points for the college and career readiness of students within the lowest third of proficiency citywide.

As part of the Department of Education’s increased focus on rigorous instruction in the classroom, the College and Career Preparatory Course Index (CCPCI) recognizes schools for offering approved rigorous college preparatory classes such as Advanced Placement and college credit-bearing courses. In addition, 52 courses were certified as college-ready by the DOE based on a quantitative and qualitative review that included analysis of the college outcomes of a school’s former students and a review of student work. For example, students at Harry S. Truman High School examine literature through multiple critical lenses aimed at college-level discourse in English 5-6 Honors.  In this course, students are encouraged to build higher-level written and verbal communication skills while challenging assumptions about the world around them.  In another example, students at Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical Education High School advance their technical knowledge and skills in preparation for college course work in engineering, information technology, math, and science in partnership with Cisco’s CCNA Exploration curriculum.  Finally, students who take English 12 at East Side Community School learn to read, write, and debate about canonical texts, such as Greek tragedies and plays by Shakespeare and Arthur Miller.

Progress Reports for high schools, transfer high schools, and Young Adult Borough Centers are now available on the Department of Education’s web site, along with Progress Report Overviews, which are designed to explain highlights of each school’s report to families.

Reports and Grades can be found here.