GreatPhillySchools Data Sources (2018)

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GreatPhillySchools (“GPS”) uses the most current data available in developing its school ratings. Ratings are updated on an annual basis.

(Updated March 2018)


Academic Ratings (Math, Reading, and Science Ratings): Public school ratings, including public charter schools, are derived from results on Pennsylvania System of School Assessment standardized tests (PSSAs) administered in Spring 2017 for elementary and middle schools.  For public high schools, scores are derived from the Keystone exams, administered during the 2016-2017 academic year.  

Raw data measures the percentage of students at or above grade level in math and reading. Catholic K-8 school ratings are derived from results on the TerraNova exam - a standardized, norm-referenced assessment, measuring the percentage of students at or above grade level or above in math and reading. For Catholic High Schools ratings, the Standard Aptitude Test (SAT) is used.

In most cases, academic ratings are not issued for non-Catholic private schools either because: (1) they do not administer the PSSA, TerraNova, or SAT; or (2) they have not provided their standardized test data to GPS.

Please note: No PASA/Keystone exam scores were included in the PSSA Proficiency data used to calculate GPS ratings.

Attendance Ratings: Public school ratings are derived from the School District of Philadelphia’s School Performance Report from the 2016-17 academic year. Private school ratings are derived from attendance reports submitted by schools directly to GPS for the 2016-17 academic year.

School Incident Ratings: Public school ratings are derived from the total number of reportable incidents reported to the Pennsylvania Department of Education for the 2016-17 academic year. Private school ratings are derived from similar reports submitted by private schools directly to GPS for the 2016-17 academic year.  

For public schools, a reportable incident includes one or more acts of misconduct, involving one or more offenders violating criteria defined Pennsylvania Act 26 of 1995. Reportable incidents include serious criminal violations such as rape and aggravated assault, as well as much broader types of violations such as bullying, fighting and minor altercations. It also includes behavior that violates a school's educational mission, climate of respect, or jeopardizes the intent of the school to be free of aggression against persons or property, drugs, weapons, disruptions and disorder.

To view a reportable incident report for a particular public school, see the Pennsylvania Safe Schools Reports.

College Bound: Public school college matriculation rates are derived from the rates released by the School District of Philadelphia in the 2016-17 School Progress Report. These figures capture the percentage of annual graduates who enroll in any postsecondary institution in the first fall following their graduation date. GPS includes this data for private schools when available.

High Academic Growth Indicator (green arrow): Underlying data for this indicator comes from the Pennsylvania Value Added Assessment System (PVAAS). GPS obtained from PVAAS 3-year Average Growth Index (AGI) data, separately in reading and math, for each school. Schools with a 3-year AGI of 2.0 or higher in both reading and math receive a “High Academic Growth” indicator (green arrow) on their profiles. An AGI of 2 indicates significant evidence that the school exceeded the norm for Pennsylvania Academic Growth This indicator is not a rating and therefore not factored into a school's overall rating.

Other Data: Other figures on GreatPhillySchools were provided by the schools themselves or by the School District. These include demographic and enrollment information, as well as Advanced Placement participation rates and SAT scores.

Disclaimer: Data collection and analysis for GPS was managed by the Philadelphia School Partnership in consultation with Data Partners LLC, a data analytics consulting firm with significant experience analyzing and modeling student and school performance data. Guidance and assistance was also provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, McGraw-Hill’s CTB division (producer of the TerraNova) and Frontier 21 Solutions, an education research company.