No Child Left Behind is behind us.  Thankfully, new school assessments are in place, at least for now.  Our first report cards are in. Now what?

Now we get to work.

Not that we, schools, parents and community have not been working plenty hard already. We have. But as with everything else, the world is changing. We need to learn new things in new ways. The new report cards can help us get there. We embrace them.

There will be the inevitable lure of comparing and weighing and judging. Don’t go there. These report cards are important tools for each school, every school, to use to get better, raise standards, and enhance the many good things going on in our schools already.

In Madison these scores can provide additional context for existing school improvement plans, achievement gap plans and other measures of student learning. We need to focus on those.

Remember, even these new, improved measurement tools will change in a couple of years. Look at them as bridge to the future – the future of our kids.