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Beyond the Books: New school report cards out today

School report cards
School report cards
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It’s that time of year again — the time of year when the tables are turned and schools get graded on how effective they are.

This year, however, there is a new wrinkle: The schools will not get letter grades like they have received in the past. Critics say the letter grading for schools lacks detail and is counterproductive.

Heidi Matthews with the Utah Education Association says letter grades for schools are “unfair and demoralizing."

She says the new interactive database will allow a parent to see how a school is doing based on new criteria. Schools are now put into four categories:

  1. Exemplary, which means the school is excelling,
  2. Typically, which means the school is doing as well as the majority of other schools,
  3. Developing
  4. Critical needs, which means the school needs additional help.

Matthews says the new criteria take into account challenges faced by schools that may have language and economic issues.

“They are looking at things like attendance, they're looking at subgroups," Matthews said, " students in poverty, English language-learners who have significantly different needs."

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If you’d like to see how your school is performing you can go to

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