Thursday, June 15, 2017

Draft Accountability Regulation: Support and Additional Data

| Post By Susan Perkins Weston |

The Kentucky Board of Education recently held its first reading of a new accountability system regulation. My earlier posts looked at how the draft deals with standards and with indicators and how it deals with goals and with ratings. This post takes on a final three questions (identifying schools for support, providing support, and sharing additional data)

For more background, take a look at this quick summary of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and Kentucky’s Senate Bill 1 (SB 1) or at the full regulation draft included in the June 7 KBE agenda (scroll down to item XXI).

5. How will we identify schools for added support?
The draft regulation does not address support, but SB 1 provides identification rules that include:
  • Tier I targeted support (early warning) for schools where one or more student groups have results like the lowest 10% of schools for two or more years
  • Tier II targeted support for schools where one or more student groups has results like the lowest 5% of schools
  • Comprehensive support for schools where overall results are in the lowest 5% of schools, high schools where graduation rates are below 80%, and schools that have qualified for tier II targeted support for three or more years
For ESSA approval, each state needs three tiers of support:
1. Targeted support must be given to schools where any student group is “consistently underperforming,” but leaves states to define that category. Kentucky’s Tier I (like lowest 10%) rule is a viable option for providing that definition.
2. Additional targeted support must be given to schools with groups like the lowest 5% of schools, and Kentucky’s Tier II targeted support rules tightly fits that rule.
3. Comprehensive support must be given if overall results are in the lowest 5% of schools, graduation rates are below 67%, or a school has not additional targeted support after multiple years. Do notice that SB 1's 80% graduation rate sets the bar substantially higher than the federal minimum.
6. What support will we provide to identified schools?
The draft regulation does not address this issue, but (again) SB 1 provides a process for this work. As a very brief summary of those steps:
  • For schools identified for targeted support, local school personnel will work with parents and educators to develop a revised school improvement plan for local board of education approval.
  • For schools identified for comprehensive support, the local board of education will select a turnaround audit team to study the school. Once the report is in, the board will select a turnaround team and collaborate with others to develop a three-year plan, with the Kentucky Department of Education monitoring and reviewing the plan’s implementation.

7. How will we promote accountability for results not included in the ratings and support rules?
The draft regulation does not address reporting data that will not be used for accountability. The Department will, of course, have the option of including additional data in school report cards, and recent discussions across the state has shown substantial interest in seeing and using that added information.

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