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School Letter Grades and Rankings

Understand how schools in Arizona get rated, measured and compared.

As you look into schools – you may notice different school ranking or rating systems. These methods vary in method and approach. The intention is to try to give you a snapshot of the school and how it may compare to other schools. Ratings are done by both the State of Arizona and outside organizations that attempt to help families locate and review schools.

STATE OF ARIZONA “A-F” SCHOOL LETTER GRADES 

The State of Arizona is required by Federal and State Law to measure school performance each year.  Arizona uses an “A-F” Letter Grade System to evaluate school performance. Arizona public schools (district schools and charter schools) will receive a letter grade each year.  

The Arizona “A-F” Letter Grade System is based on quantitative data collected by each school.  The letter grades that Arizona schools receive from year to year are largely based on standardized tests and quantitative data.

Arizona’s “A-“F Letter Grades are the State’s leaders best attempt to create a fair standard measurement to provide the parents the opportunity to see results in a simple and understandable process.  However, it can be difficult to include and measure ALL components of a school.  One needs to remember that the “A-F” letter grades (while well intended and well thought through), may not tell the “entire story” or capture the whole picture of a school.   

You can see the State of Arizona letter grades for all public schools online.
AZ Dept. of Ed. K-12 School Report Cards (State Letter Grades “A-F”)

For an FAQ on Arizona “A-F” Letter Grades

WHAT ARE THE “A-F” LETTER GRADES USED FOR IN ARIZONA?

  • Allow for school administrators to see areas that need improvement
  • Provide a yearly gauge AND yardstick for parents and school leaders
  • Measure proficiency and growth of students (via standardized tests)
  • Allows for a simpler and more understandable process for parents to compare school performance
  • For successful (A+ schools) can be a strong marketing tool
  • Allows for closure of charter schools that repeatedly earn low marks

OTHER OUTSIDE ORGANIZATIONS RATING AND RANKING SYSTEMS

Other school search or school locator organizations have established their own ranking or rating system for schools. On one hand, rating systems simplify the research process and give parents a yardstick to compare schools. Many things about a school’s culture and climate could be left out. At the end of the day – rankings should be one of MANY tools parents use when searching schools.