Elementary and middle schools may want to plan on science, social studies, and on-demand writing having accountability consequences for 2010 and 2011.
How? NCLB requires an additional indicator beyond reading and mathematics. Since 2002, we've used each year's Accountability Index as the additional elementary/middle indicator for the next year, and we will the 2008 results that way for 2009. But under Senate Bill 1, there will be no 2009 Accountability Index, so we need a new solution.
Yesterday, KDE staff reported on the issue to the Kentucky Board of Education and recommended using some combination of scores from the other tested subjects, following advice from district assessment coordinators and the School Curriculum, Assessment, and Accountability Council.
Commissioner Holliday pointed out that with school already underway in some districts and starting soon elsewhere, all educators will want early information on the likely direction Kentucky will take. Accordingly, he asked Board members to share concerns and questions or to give an initial indication of support for the recommended approach.
Nods all around indicated that Board members are currently inclined to support the idea. Initial action will not come until October, with a final decision scheduled for November, which means change is still possible and details of how the scores will be used must still be decided.
Still, science, social studies and writing now seem likely to matter for elementary and middle school NCLB results. (Graduation rates will still be the added indicator for high schools.)