Friday, October 30, 2015

OPS releases Annual Report

The results from the Kentucky Unbridled Learning Assessments were released at midnight. 

We need to take the opportunity to celebrate the successes from our results, we also need to step back and evaluate the challenges that are evident in many areas.  These challenges are being met by the problems of practice identified in July for each school.  From the data analysis conducted last week each school is developing strategies to address gap scores and novice reduction at the classroom level.  Most of these problems of practice emphasize learning outcomes focused on increased rigor and deeper learning around 21st century skills for college and career.

Our overall district problem of practice is very clearly aligned with this work: Engage students with innovative teaching so that ALL can graduate with the requisite skills they need to be successful in the postsecondary pathway of their choosing.  

Our work with student success is a marathon and not a sprint.  We will continue to work to identify and communicate pathways for our students to become college and career ready.   The hard work and commitment of our teachers and staff to the students of our district is evident every day.

We have also released an Annual Report about the great things happening in the Owensboro Public Schools each year in conjunction with the release of state assessment data.  The state data is an important and very public barometer of our success, but we remain firm in our commitment to educating the whole child and using multiple methods of monitoring and assessing student performance in our district.  

You can access the OPS Annual Report at the following link: 

If you are interested in further information about Unbridled Learning results, a complete data report is available at:

Postsecondary Education should be an Expectation for ALL Students

In the book, The Race Between Education and Technology, Harvard economists Claudia Golding and Lawrence Katz argue that technological progress has dramatically increased the demand for skilled workers, and that, in recent decades the American educational system is not supplying enough graduates who can carry out the tasks that a high-tech economy requires. 

“Earning a postsecondary degree or credential is no longer just a pathway to opportunity for a talented few,” the White House website states.  “Rather, it is a prerequisite for growing jobs in the
new economy.”

The two-year degree or postsecondary certificate is quickly replacing the high school diploma as the minimum credential required for most jobs and the attainment of a middle class lifestyle.

Workforce development experts at Georgetown University and the Lumina Foundation have projected that during the next decade over 60 percent of all jobs will require some form of post secondary education.  These projections indicate a strong demand for “middle skill” occupations that may not require a four-year bachelor’s degree, but will require postsecondary education. 

This trend is true in the Owensboro-Evansville region.  Currently only about 40 percent of the adult workforce in the combined Evansville and Owensboro MSAs have some form of postsecondary education.  In Owensboro alone, this means an increase of 15,000 new postsecondary credentials to keep pace with the projected demand. 

The implications are significant for K-12 and postsecondary institutions in the Tri-State.  In the Owensboro Public Schools, we are working to blend the last two years of high school with postsecondary education in programs like our early college academy.

As a region we need to be cognizant of the message we send to young people.  Postsecondary education should now be an expectation for ALL students.   Our economic future depends on it.