The Ohio Department of Education released the 2015-16 Ohio School Report Cards last week. As expected, scores appear lower than in past years. Ohio PTA urges parents and others to remember the report cards are based on new tests and higher benchmarks for students. Therefore, the lower results do not mean students are performing worse than in past years. The report cards are just one tool parents have to measure the success of school districts. Ohio PTA believes standards need to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers. “We have raised the bar for our students in Ohio, and we are confident they are rising to the challenge,” said Sheila Ragland, Ohio PTA president. Ohio PTA works to educate parents and others on assessment and score report changes. Ohio PTA also encourages parents to take an active role in learning about report card scores, what’s expected of students, and more. Free resources are available to parents. Many are available on Ohio PTA’s College & Career Readiness Standards website: ptacommoncore.org. Members of Ohio PTA are also able to share information at meetings, conferences, and similar events. Founded in 1901, Ohio PTA is the oldest and largest volunteer organization in the State of Ohio focusing on the health, welfare, safety, and education of children and youth. A branch of the National PTA, it has nearly 70,000 members in over 500 units. The organization works to make every child’s potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children.