By Yadira Lopez ’21
Recently, Pritzker’s school report card was posted by the Illinois State Board of Education to showcase Pritzker for parents and students.
“The Illinois State Board of Education annually releases a report card that shows how each school, district, and the state is performing on a wide range of educational goals. The Illinois Report Card has two main components: the At-a-Glance Report that provides important information about each school or district in a one-page, printable format; and the online report card that delivers in-depth information with explanations of each indicator available, ”provided the Illinois Report Card Frequently Asked Questions page. Principal Carrie Spitz explained, “These are measurements that indicate whether or not we are doing right by our families, our community, and our kids.”
The information about Pritzker that was used for the school report card was available to the state and was “public information” as Spitz stated. The state is in charge of the SAT and all attendance is uploaded to a system that the state has access to. The state also had AP scores that they were able to see through a school code Spitz explained. College acceptance and the number of students that stay in college also play a role and was available to them. Spitz added on, “There are things that say this school is organized, this school is high preforming, this school does a lot to serve their kids. They are capturing and saying these things are important […] and we get a score.” The school got a score and parents that use Go CPS, which is a website that allows parents and students to research schools and apply to them, see this number. “For example, if our front office hasn’t collected the right number of forms for our students, our school report card gets lower,” Spitz said.
Spitz noted how this website is helpful for parents. “Within the city, [the report card] might help a parent at Go CPS or it might help a parent decide which community they want to live in.“ Spitz further explained that when people are moving, they look at the Illinois State Board of Education Report Card to research what area they will like to move to and see which schools have certain scores. Pam Johnson, Dean of Culture, stated how this is a tool that parents should use from a variety of other tools. “I think that it gives parents a very good comparative, apples to apples, let’s look at one school versus another,” Johnson added on.
Spitz stated that the school received a notification about two weeks ago about this report card being uploaded. When asked about the report card itself she said, “It is meant to help inform parents and so it is very important to us as a school because parents choosing us allows us to continue to exist and thrive.” Spitz added on, “We can always improve. We are not perfect, but we are so proud of what these numbers mean.” This report card serves as a resource that allows the school to improve. Johnson stated how, they use this information for “promotional material” that they use “when [they] are trying to recruit 8th graders or trying to recruit new staff members or talking about the school to donors and other people that are interested in the school.” Additionally, she added, “We also use it to measure ourselves against other schools [and] to make sure that we really are providing the absolute best for all of our students.”
The Illinois Report Card website also states, “IllinoisReportCard.com is the state’s official source for information about public schools across Illinois.”