The Learning Curve is a weekly column that answers questions about schools using plain language. Have a question about how your local schools work? Write me at email@example.com.
On Sept. 18, California must submit its draft plan spelling out how it will comply with the Every Student Succeeds Act. The plan will lay out how the state will implement standards, assess students, hold schools and districts accountable and execute assistance programs to needy students.
Every Student Succeeds replaces the No Child Left Behind Act as the federal law of the land. It was signed by President Barack Obama in 2015, and goes into full effect in the 2017-2018 year.
Under the law, states have to submit accountability plans to the Department of Education. States can pick their own goals, but they must address proficiency on tests, English-language proficiency and graduation rates. The plans must also incorporate at least one more indicator of the state’s choice. Those could include things like student engagement, access to and completion of advanced coursework, post-secondary readiness or school climate.
The new law differs from No Child Left Behind in several ways. It doesn’t set numerical achievement targets nor does it mandate how states should intervene if a school falls short. Every Student Succeeds gives states more leeway to set their own goals and forms of accountability.
We Stand Up for You. Will You Stand Up for Us?
Great read here:
Americans Have Given Up on Public Schools. That’s a Mistake.
NCLB was not great but it made it difficult to hide schools’ underperformance. I fear politicians and unions want very much to return to hiding schools’ underperformance.
Isn't it time to get rid of pretend accountability and stop these expensive tap dances? We're forcing our public school system to get creative by farming out kids to private education and putting kids in on line diploma factories.
We're obviously either unable or unwilling to address the problems of non-accountability and special interest induced gridlock in our education system so how about changing things up a bit? We could graduate any kid that attends school 70% of the time for 4 years.A financial incentive could be included giving kids money for better than 70% attendance. Think of it, no more culturally biased testing, no class warfare, no stress on kids to compete and more importantly no valuation of public education's efforts. Couple the previous examples with eliminating hundreds of government employee cubicle hamsters that keep all the stats and we have a win - win. Don't concern yourselves with life after graduation for the kids, legislating lifestyles will follow post haste.
@philip piel Don't you think high school graduation should be related to knowledge gained and not attendance?
Yes Dennis I do but I appear to be in the minority. My proposal is not my ideal fix for public education however it seems to be the only logical solution. Having meaningful change in public education happen requires buy in from union special interest who resist any attempt at accountability and quantifying their product.
Going round and round with excuses for failure like "hunger" and "culture" all the while lowering the bar in the name of fairness is a gross disservice to students, tax payers and our country. Instead of more window dressing in the form of time, effort and money spent by government employees in coming up with and administering yet another program that goes nowhere why not give state government a break and not only save money but have 90+% graduation rates?
Dennis, we stopped caring about effort years ago, results not the ability to compete is now a basic right and in the interest of fairness we should not discriminate against those that don't meet unfair and culturally biased hurdles in order to graduate, it's rude.
The whole point of the dashboard was to remove the comparative model in education. Instead this allows each school to focus on their strengths and weakness as it applies to that school. The school I teach is constantly regarded as a high performing school, and based on the old model that was easy to show. Now that we have the new dashboard and it goes beyond test schools and lowers the threshold for a "significant subgroup" more students are being counted in more ways. This, I think, is a step in the right direction. We need to move away from standardized tests to measure student achievement.