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Published: Friday, 6/6/2014

TPS’ report card faces revision as probe widens


Toledo Public Schools’ state report card could be revised.

The Ohio Department of Education announced Wednesday that it was expanding its investigation into data-scrubbing practices in the 2012-2013 school year for Toledo, Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Columbus districts. The department had revised 2011-2012 report cards for those and other districts and had announced plans to review the 2012-2013 report cards.

The revision of the 2011-2012 report cards led to a significant drop in some TPS schools’ scores but kept the district’s rating unchanged. At most TPS schools, scores increased.

In 2012, Ohio districts came under scrutiny for a form of data-scrubbing that involved the removal of students from attendance and thus test-score rolls. In the practice, districts broke enrollments for truant students, which under state reporting guidelines meant that their test scores wouldn’t count toward district report card grades.

The state auditor investigated, as did Ohio Department of Education.

Toledo school leaders argued that the revised results were proof the district had acted with no ill intent, as TPS officials have long argued that their practices were a good-faith effort to comply with state regulations.

More serious than the report-card revisions is a decision by the state to refer TPS and six other districts to its office of professional conduct for further investigation. School officials found to have manipulated data could lose their educator’s license, prohibiting them from teaching in an Ohio public school.

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