Sunday, December 22, 2013

Park Tudor Earned A "D" Last Year

It's the most expensive private schools in the state of Indiana where some of the wealthiest and most influential residents in the Indianapolis area send their children. So why did Park Tudor earn a "D" on recent report cards issued by the Indiana Department of Education to the state's schools? According to the Chalkbeat blog, the school's officials blame the poor grade on error.
Neal pointed to Park Tudor, an expensive and highly regarded private school in Indianapolis, which received a D grade despite 100 percent of its graduates going on to college and a slew of academic honors, as another example of a strange report card result.
Park Tudor spokeswoman Cathy Chapelle said its grade, too, was in error.
“The assessment grade reflects issues of reporting and communication, not of academic performance,” Chapelle said in a statement. “In fact, our academic standards and results are among the highest in the state. In 2013 alone, 201 Park Tudor students in grades 9-12 took a total of 490 Advanced Placement exams; 62% of the exams earned a score of 4 or 5 and over 87% earned a score of 3 or higher.”
Chapelle did not elaborate on what the school meant by “reporting and communication” or how it could have influenced Park Tudor’s grade.
If schools like Christel House and Park Tudor decide to appeal to the state board, would they prevail? Elsener was not encouraging, suggesting the best strategy might be just to move on.
“I think I’d say this year was a hiccup,” he said. “You have to decide where to put your best investment of time.”
Parents who send their children to Park Tudor pay tuition ranging from $15,330 to $18,830 per school year. Damn. It costs a hell of a lot of money to be an elitist. About one-third of the students receive financial assistance. The average financial assistance award is $9,000.


Anonymous said...

This is cause to remove Glenda Ritz from office.

Everyone in Indianapolis knows that the graduates of Park Tudor have graduated because of strong academic success. If a school that has 100% of its students graduate and admitted to colleges, and Glenda Ritz rates it as a "D", then I have to say her rating system stinks.

...and just what grade did Glenda Ritz give the schools that failed to address violent disciplinary problems that are so severe that their attendance rates are low, graduation rates below 75%, and have less than 25% admitted to college?

Gary R. Welsh said...

Only the top 1% can afford to attend the school. The demographics alone favor high graduation rates and college admissions. I suspect Park Tudor doesn't fail students when parents are paying that much for tuition. If someone doesn't graduate, it's probably because they got removed for disciplinary reasons.

Anonymous said...

...I doubt that Park Tudor has a suspension/expulsion rate that is 1%.

-While certain local districts have reported suspension/expulsion rates over 20% and even higher when one considers the violent nature of incidents that the administrators refuse to allow reported by not allowing documentation.

Regardless: If a school with a 100% graduation rate and 100% acceptance rate to college gets a "D" on the "Glenda Ritz Scale", I call that scale seriously flawed.

Schools should be required to report the violent disciplinary actions and not use "alternative" means to avoid reporting.

Anonymous said...

Indiana's government is not fit to speak to Park Tudor, let alone to "grade" it.

Park Tudor kids are in no way "elitist." The elite does not come from central Indiana. Park Tudor kids are just smart Midwesterners.

Ellen said...

The grading scale in use predates Glenda Ritz.

In fact: "Indiana schools chief Glenda Ritz pointed out this would be the last time state officials would use the current grading formula to issue the grades. General Assembly members threw it out last session, ordering the State Board to come up with a new model next year."

Anonymous said...

Why the cost/benefit ratio of a Park Tudor education can be justified:
1. Park Tudor students take an entrance exam to be considered for admittance. The level of financial assistance available is well known among those otherwise unable to afford tuition.
2. Parents who value high educational standards, and students being taught by Phd.'s.
3. Parents appreciate that their struggling student will have every single one of the student's teachers meet, discuss their observations on why the student is struggling, what they can do to help the student, and then come in on their own time for parents and student to meet with all the teachers to discuss recommendations.
4. Parents and children appreciate a safe environment where they don't have to be afraid to be at the school
5. Because of its small size, every student has an opportunity to participate in musicals, sports teams, etc, without being first discarded because they're not an ueber performer. This allows students to discover and cultivate talents they never realized they had.
6. The stimulating class discussions engaged in with other intelligent, motivated learners creates a desire for knowledge and intellectual excellence.
7. Graduating from a competitive, well regarded school opens future doors and scholarships to other high level institutions where academic and personal excellence can be pursued.

Anonymous said...

Ellen (9:58 post): And who was the State Superintendent of Public Instruction when the grade was issued? Where does the buck stop?

I just suppose Ellen will say that it is "someone else's fault" that one of the finest academic institutions received a grade not in accordance with the educational standards.

True leaders do not rationalize, make excuses, and find a scapegoat. A true leader would not allow such a grade to have my humble opinion.

Anonymous said...

So will Harvard or Yale drop Park Tudor as a source of students? How about IU or Purdue? Notre Dame?

I suspect the consequences for it will be less than for a Tipton or Sheridan.

Grade at local school was messed up, and DOE staffer who said "we will fix that" is quiet now that all appeals are denied.

Anonymous said...

As someone whose children graduated from Park Tudor, I can tell you it is a terrific place, not just for the wealthy but for all kinds of kids. My children attended the school on scholarship and then went to college and grad school, the first in our family to do this. We are not rich (I am a stylist and my husband is a police officer). But Park Tudor helped our kids get a great education. We will always be thankful to them.

But I think Glenda Ritz should not be a scape goat for all of this. Everyone agrees that the A-F system needs to be fixed. She did not create it, neither did the Board. It is to bad that the grades were put out even when Ritz and the Board (who have been fighting no stop as we all know) BOTH agree that the system is flawed, but that is the nature of government, as my husband will say.

Let's move on to more important things, like getting more cops in IMPD and continuing to improve public schools over all. (Oh, and by the way, I am not a fan of Ritz. I just think that there is no sense continuing to bicker.)

Pete Boggs said...

You may discover that their "non-compliance" with Commie Core & independent spirit have placed them in the cross hairs of anti-ed / unionized phantoms of the operatives...

Anonymous said...

Pete Boggs, have you been partaking of too many adult beverages?

What are you talking about????

Anonymous said...

Getting more cops in IMPD is as failed an idea as is putting more money into public schools.

Government is fine for some things, disastrous for most. After decades of idiotic laws that have destroyed the family and proper social relationships, we now have feral beasts as young.

After decades of establishing a guild system in schools, we have outright dunces as teachers, churned from the easiest major on campus.

"Commie Core," love it.

Anonymous said...

I am a current student at Park Tudor school. Our graduation rate and college admittance is 100% because this school really does refuse to leave students behind. They make it their own personal interest to make sure their students succeed. You get the grades you deserve at this school, but they do try as hard as they can to make sure you work so you get good grades. Trust me this is coming from a student who had an average GPA of 2.9 freshman year and now as a junior I have a GPA of 3.8. It was a long road getting here, I had countless meetings with my parents and all my teachers which the principal even attended. A comment above is right, Park Tudor doesn't fail students when parents are paying that much, but not in the sleazy way everyone is assuming.
This is why I can easily agree that our expulsion rate is 1%. I would say 1-3 kids a year are expelled. Park Tudor does not let their students get to that point and does anything in their power to help them. I admit, there are some kids Park Tudor should let go of and don't. And a lot of it is because those families have money. But I can only think of 5 kids out of about 450 that are deserving of expulsion that still would keep our rate at 1.8% (including the 3 that do get expelled).
Also the grade has not dropped us off of any colleges' radars. I know of 2 people that got into Harvard, about 5 people into Princeton, several (over 20) into IU or Purdue.
I do disagree with this rating, although Park Tudor isn't flawless. It has some problems, but I must say none of those are within their academics or any other classes. The teachers are phenomenal I have multiple that have made incredible impacts on me and have taught me things outside of just the curriculum of the class room. Park Tudor supports and guides students to all their goals, and not just in academics. Their art departments are amazing I have spent more hours in the studios than I have in any other part of the school.
I urge skeptics to do some more research, or even visit the school. People come into our classes to watch all the time. Park Tudor is an amazing school, my career goal is just to make enough so I can give my kids the same opportunities I had. I want my kids to go to a school like Park Tudor because I value the education that they have given me. I value it so much that as a Junior on a school night who has all her homework done and could watch TV until she falls asleep instead has chosen to write for a really long time (not quite sure how long) about how much she appreciates her school.