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Making the grade

Gazette staff May 9th, 2012

As the school year winds down, some people get a little on edge about grades.

Brad Gregg

And we don’t just mean students. Legislators and school administrators are in a tizzy over a plan by state schools Superintendent Janet Barresi to label Oklahoma schools with letter grades A-F.

Gov. Mary Fallin approved the state education department proposal last week at roughly the same time the plan was being blasted by a state House committee. By a 9-1 vote, the House Administrative Rules and Government Oversight Committee passed a resolution dissing the grading system.

“The rules … do not reflect the intent of the Legislature when we approved this grading system last year,” said Rep. Mike Shelton, D-Oklahoma City. “Our intent was to give parents an easy, transparent system for determining the effectiveness of their local schools. These rules … create a grading system that is convoluted, difficult to understand, read or follow.”

Whether the resolution will make it to a full House vote remains to be seen, but the brouhaha might all be for naught. A Barresi spokesman has said a grading system is mandated by state law.

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