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Two Oklahoma school districts get F's on report card

Farris Public Schools received an F for failing to test at least 90 percent of the students, in part because the Oklahoma Education Department invalidated a number of tests after finding irregularities.
BY MEGAN ROLLAND mrolland@opubco.com Published: December 10, 2012
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Only two school districts received F's under the new grading system launched by lawmakers to inform parents about school and district performance.

Farris Public Schools in Atoka County received an F, despite having attained a score that ordinarily would be a solid B, because the district failed to test at least 90 percent of its students.

Tricia Pemberton, spokeswoman for the Education Department, said failing to test enough students results in an automatic F on the report cards released this week.

“Farris had a number of testing irregularities with their special education students, and we had to invalidate six scores,” Pemberton said.

In the 2011 to 2012 school year, there were 72 students enrolled in the only school in the district — a prekindergarten through eighth-grade facility. Six students would account for 8 percent of the population, meaning only another two or three students had to not be tested to automatically fail.

Still, Farris Elementary School is among those that are considered low-performing by the state and have been put on a list of schools to receive special attention from the Education Department.

“That's why we found the testing irregularities, because we were there so frequently” Pemberton said.

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