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Quick Summary of California’s New Accountability Measures

Written by
September 7th, 2016

The State Board of Education will be voting on the state’s new accountability measure on Thursday. Here’s a sneak peak at what they’ll be voting on.

What will the board adopt on Thursday?

They’re called “evaluation rubrics,” which is basically an accountability tool with several components:

  • A set of statewide and district performance indicators measuring the eight priorities identified by the funding formula.

  • Benchmarks that define levels of performance by districts, schools and student subgroups for each state indicator. For example, high schools that suspended more than 10 percent of their students last year and failed to reduce their rate over the past three years would be in the lowest level.

  • Criteria for determining which low-performing school districts would need technical help from a county office of education and which would require more intensive intervention.

  • Information on model practices for the priorities that board staff are developing, such as descriptions of effective ways districts have lowered absenteeism or suspension rates.

What are the state indicators?

The board chose six indicators for which there is or will be reliable statewide data for districts and schools. The board will also explore adopting a high school readiness indicator.

  • An academic indicator using on scores on Smarter Balanced assessments in English Language Arts and Math for grades 3–8 and on the Next Generation Science Standards tests when they’re developed.

  • A college and career indicator, which, for this year, will combine Grade 11 Smarter Balanced test scores and percentages of students who have successfully completed a career technical education pathway and the high school courses (known as A-G) required for admission to the University of California and California State University.

  • An English learner indicator that includes the progress of English learners toward English language proficiency.

  • High school graduation rates.

  • Suspension rates by elementary, middle and high school grade levels.

  • Rates of chronic absence, when data becomes available, starting next year.

What are the local indicators?

The board has selected four local indicators, corresponding to priorities under the funding formula for which statewide data is either not yet collected or hard to quantify. They will apply primarily to districts:

  • School conditions: assignment of qualified teachers, distribution of standards-aligned textbooks and the operation of safe, clean and functional facilities.

  • Implementation of Common Core and other academic standards.

  • Parent engagement.

  • School climate through local surveys of parents, teachers and students.

The great news is that they’re including Social Emotional Learning Indicators (Chronic Absenteeism, Suspensions), College and Career Readiness, Parent Engagement, Perception Data and all of this information will need to be disaggregated by each subgroup. Similarly, all of this information will be in a dashboard for each LEA (District) to monitor their overall progress.


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