Educators opposed to school rankings changes

Posted at 5:49 PM, Feb 06, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-07 01:19:54-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) -- While stories on transportation and redistricting have dominated political headlines, drastic education changes have been making their way through the General Assembly.

Bills changing how the state ranks its schools have cleared both chambers.

If signed by Governor Bob McDonnell, who indicated his support for the measure, schools would be graded on a scale of A through F, similar to how teachers grade their students papers.

"I think they are meaningful reforms," State Delegate John O'Bannon said.

"Anything we can do in a positive fashion is worth wild," O'Bannon added.

But some in the education field are not pleased.

Meg Gruber, President of the Virginia Education Association, said the group is disappointed by the decision. She is worried giving a school a C would send a bad impression to parents.

"We have a lot of schools that would be ranked as a C and in today's society a C is not looked upon ais good," Gruber said.

Gruber also expressed concern over a bill that passed the House that is also supported by Governor McDonnell that would allow the state to operate a school if that school fails repeatedly.

"Schools are to be governed by local school boards and so you are taking these schools away from local control," Gruber added.

The Virginia Education Association has expressed concern over the
constitutionality of the measure -- something many Republicans reject.

"I don't think these changes violate the State Constitution," O'Bannon said.

Stay with CBS 6 News and for the latest developments on this story and complete coverage of the General Assembly from Joe St. George.