Eye on Education


President Barack Obama tours a graphic design classroom at Columbus's Fort Hayes Arts and Academic High School in September 2011.

Columbus, Ohio's Largest School District


MANDEL NGAN / AFP/Getty Images

President Barack Obama tours a graphic design classroom at Columbus's Fort Hayes Arts and Academic High School in September 2011.

The Columbus school district is Ohio’s largest school district and enrolled about 50,000 students in 2010-11.

About 80 percent of its students are from low-income families.

Looking at graduation rates, 72 percent of Columbus’s class of 2010 graduated from high school within four years.

In the 2010-11 school year, 55 percent of Columbus fifth graders could demonstrate basic, grade-level reading skills and 44 percent could demonstrate basic, grade-level math skills, according to the district’s state report card. For eighth graders, those figures were 69 percent for reading and 48 percent for math.

Columbus received a rating of “continuous improvement” on its 2010-11 state report card, the equivalent of a “C.”

Gene Harris has served as Columbus’s superintendent since 2001.

The Columbus Education Association, an affiliate of the Ohio Education Association and the National Education Association, represents Columbus teachers. Rhonda Johnson is the Columbus union’s president.

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