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The League of Women Voters of Metropolitan Columbus


Columbus City Schools Forum Addresses Changes and Improvements to the School District

Thursday, Mar. 3, 2016

Alesia Gillison, Gary Baker, and Dave Patton
Columbus City Schools leaders touted improvements and promised to do more to address district challenges Monday night at a League-sponsored forum, "Columbus City Schools: Looking to the Future."

School board president Gary Baker and Chief Academic Officer Alesia Gillison cited the district's recent "A" on the 2015 State Report Card for overall student progress for students in grades 4 through 8 for growth in math and reading as evidence that the district has come a long way from the attendance scandal that has informed public perception for several years.

The forum was organized by the League's Education and Advocacy Committee and was cosponsored by the Whetstone Library, which hosted he event.

Noting that the "A" grade improved from an "F" in just one year, Gillison said that her staff have worked round the clock to improve the quality of instruction in classrooms across the district. She pointed out other improvements, from increased pre-K access, third grade reading scores and enrollment in college credit courses to decreased expulsions and detentions for disruptive behaviors.

Baker unveiled the new district mission and vision statements, reinforcing his goal of making the board the strongest and most supportive school board to ensure the best outcomes for children. He pointed to upcoming improvements in facilities management and commended superintendent Dan Good for his leadership.

In response to questions, Gillison emphasized that there is much more to be done to regain public trust and improve outcomes for students, but that she and her staff have been reenergized by the "A" rating.

Additional materials from the meeting will be available soon.