Tulsa Public Schools unveils A through F district grades, 36 schools receive failing scores

TULSA - Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Keith Ballard opted to release the state's A through F grades for his district Tuesday, a day before Oklahoma State Department of Education officials are slated to make the statewide scores public.

Ballard, who has been a vocal opponent of the second-year grading system, held a news conference Tuesday afternoon to address the controversial report cards, while also giving the community the first look at the scores for local schools.

The results are tough to swallow. Thirty-six schools will receive an F when the official scores are released Wednesday, compared to eight last year, which still registered as more failing scores than any other district in Oklahoma.

Seventeen TPS schools will also get Ds, four will score Cs, 10 Bs, and 7 As, according to Ballard.

Of the 53 Tulsa schools to receive a D or an F, nearly three in four are elementary schools. Project ACCEPT Traice Elementary School, located near LL Tisdale Parkway and West Pine Street, was the worst offender on the list, grading out with a 22 out of 100.

SEE HOW EACH SCHOOL DID  (http://bit.ly/1iKPBPg)

Tuesday, a visibly heated Ballard said no Tulsa schools deserve an F and again called for changes to the system.

"I'm done talking about this," he said to a full house. "It's a meaningless and inaccurate formula. These grades are inconsequential, we're working to do our best."

Last month, Ballard, who had access to the grades the week prior, sent home a letter to parents, calling A through F "seriously flawed" and "not ready for prime-time." In response, OSDE officials released a statement, chalking Ballard's comments up to "campaign material."

RELATED: TPS, OSDE spar over scores (http://bit.ly/18UeVkd)

This came just after a report published by independent researchers from the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University, which found the A through F program largely imperfect and potentially more deficient than its initial formula.

"In summary, the data we have analyzed demonstrate quite dramatically that the letter grade system for school evaluation has very little meaning and certainly cannot be used legitimately to inform high-stakes decisions ... The resulting grade has practically no meaning or utility," reads an excerpt. 

VIEW THE FULL REPORT (http://bit.ly/1egZbf9)

State Superintendent Janet Barresi would soon announce the delay of the grades' release, citing "an abundance of caution."

2NEWS reporter Liz Bryant was at the news conference and will have more information throughout the evening.

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