To say that Maritime Academy of Toledo officials are pleased with the school’s grade on the Ohio Department of Education preliminary report card for the 2011-12 school year would be an understatement.
The report card showed the Maritime Academy of Toledo jumped four letter grades to achieve a ranking of Excellent.
“This is just unheard of. We were hoping for a one or two letter grade improvement, but it was quite remarkable and emotionally rewarding to see the Excellent rating and to realize just how well the students performed this past year,” said the school’s Superintendent Renee Marazon.
“The preliminary report showed that we earned an ‘Effective’ rating, but we received an additional bump because we achieved an ‘Above Value-Added’ rating, meaning that The Maritime Academy was able to advance students more than one grade level during the 2011 -2012 school year. That took our final report card rating to Excellent.”
Two years ago, The Maritime Academy held a Continuous Improvement ranking, but slipped into Academic Watch the following year by just a few percentage points.
The slip prompted school administration to increase student participation in after-school academic programs.
“From 3 to 4 p.m., cadets were required to attend test prep enrichment classes as a part of our 21st Century Grant Program, where students experienced one-on-one tutoring from our enrichment teachers,” Marazon said. “We then offered continued enrichment from 4 to 6 p.m. where students participated in swimming, boatbuilding, drumming, art, fitness, culinary, gardening, marine biology, and excursions on Mariner I, the Academy’s 41-foot research and education boat.
“Every cadet was encouraged to take advantage of these programs to advance their academic studies and at the same time, experience an enriched curriculum that would help them in their everyday lives,” the superintendent said. “The credit for this jump and the Excellent rating is reflective of the hard work put forth by the students and the teachers. They deserve all of the credit and recognition.”
Another highlight for The Maritime Academy was the Adequate Yearly Progress scores in Reading and Mathematics. In both categories, cadets from various economic, ethnic, and special needs backgrounds exceeded the state’s Target Proficiency Percentage for students from the previous school year, according to the ODE report. “In Reading, our students had a Target Proficiency Percentage of 66.3 percent, but scored well-above that at 77.4 percent. In Mathematics, their goal was 46.5 percent, but they scored 67.9 percent,” said Marazon. “When we broke those numbers down along economic and ethnic lines, we found that all groups exceeded the Target Proficiency Percentages set by the state.
“It took us seven years to reach this point, but this Excellent rating shows that our students are buying into our strict Code of Conduct and our hands-on, interactive, discovery and project approach philosophy of education,” Marazon added.
The school’s sponsor, The Educational Service Center of Central Ohio, issued a statement congratulating The Maritime Academy of Toledo as one of only three of a total of 35 community schools in Lucas County to earn an Excellent status.