"We are disappointed to learn that, despite our best efforts over the last school year, our district earned the "negative" value-added rating for the second year in a row," said Gordon. "We therefore anticipate that, despite relatively flat performance compared to the 2010-11 school year, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District will drop from its current Academic
Watch rating to Academic Emergency on the 2011-12 state report card when it is officially released."
While the news is disappointing, the CEO said, he cannot allow it to be discouraging, given the climate of change in which the district now operates.
"The preliminary data reaffirms the strong message we took to Columbus last year and the strong message we are taking to voters in November," said Gordon. "The legislative changes enabled by the Cleveland Plan and the resources sought from the community with Issue 107 are the city's greatest hope to do business differently in our schools and to produce the results we want and need to see each year."
With continued cuts in state and federal funding, the layoff of more than 1,000 teachers and staff and cuts totaling more than $114 million from CMSD's budget the last two years, Gordon said the District is hard-pressed to avoid continued challenges, including unacceptable class sizes, further cuts in programs and services and similarly unacceptable results on state report
"We will, of course, take a careful look at the State's data when it becomes available to us, to determine exactly why our district did not meet the value added learning goal," said Gordon. "In the meantime, we will continue to direct our focus on the needs of our students and on the critical work ahead."
"With passage of the Cleveland Plan, that so many people in Cleveland fought for this year, and with approval of a much needed levy for the city's schools, we are confident that CMSD can and will produce the academic results we must achieve for Cleveland's children."