2022 Dashboard will report Status only
SBE discusses Dashboard, CTE grants and DASS waiver during March meeting
March 21, 2022
The following State Board of Education report was prepared by Lee Angela Reid and Caitlin Jung of Capitol Advisors Group.
The State Board of Education met this month to review and take action on a number of important issues. The following are highlights from the March 9-10 SBE meeting.
Career Technical Education Incentive Grant
The SBE approved the long-awaited CTEIG allocations for 2021-22, including the allocation formula, specific funding amounts and number of grant awards, purposes for grant fund use and allowable and non-allowable expenditures. While those in the field were pleased to have the allocations approved, questions remain regarding the allocation formula, use of match and the timing of the grant awards. Discussion and work in these areas will continue.
California School Dashboard
As a result of the pandemic, federal waivers and related state legislation, the reporting of state indicators on the 2021 Dashboard was suspended and only school and district enrollment and demographic information were included. Local indicators were reported for informational purposes only and “Met” or “Not Met” determinations were not made.
Beginning with the 2022 Dashboard, state and federal accounting requirements restart. The U.S. Department of Education requires the state to make comprehensive support and improvement and additional targeted support and improvement eligibility determinations using the 2022 Dashboard data.
At the state level, however, since the California Department of Education may only use performance data on state and local indicators from the 2021–22 school year, for the 2022 Dashboard, state indicators can only display Status. There is one exception: The College/Career Indicator will not be reported due to lack of 2021 statewide grade 11 assessment data. Since CDE is only able to use data from a single school year, the 2022 Dashboard cannot report Change (i.e., the difference from prior year data) and performance colors. Therefore, the 2022 Dashboard will only report one of five Status levels for each Local Educational Agency, school and student group.
College/Career Indicator
In spring 2022, CDE will release a student-level CCI data file through the new Student Online Accountability Record Status System. SOARS is an online portal for CDE to share student-level data with authorized personnel from LEAs and charter schools.
Also, CDE has been developing two new potential measures for the CCI: civic engagement and industry certifications. CDE will be working closely with the CCI Work Group, the Alternative Schools Task Force and the Civic Engagement Work Group to define these measures.
Dashboard Alternative School Status
When the Dashboard was coming together, concerns were raised that the new accountability system did not fairly evaluate the success or progress of alternative schools that serve high-risk students. In 2017, the SBE directed CDE to develop indicators for alternative schools that evaluate the success and progress of these schools based on the Local Control Funding Formula state priorities and accountability requirements in the Every Student Succeeds Act and DASS was born. The intent was not to develop a separate accountability system for alternative schools, but rather to include “modified metrics” for indicators on the Dashboard that fairly evaluate alternative schools.
Modified methods were developed for the Graduation Rate Indicator, the CCI and the Academic Indicator but DASS schools are held accountable for all state indicators.
DASS students represent about 2.5 percent of the total number of students in California schools (151,000 DASS students). DASS schools represent about 10 percent of the total number of schools (1,044 out of about 10,000 total schools).
In 2020, the state received a letter from ED stating that the use of modified methods to calculate state indicators for DASS schools is not permissible. Specifically, California cannot establish different cut scores for the Academic Indicator and use a one-year graduation rate.
SBE approved amendments to the state’s ESSA plan with the hope the changes would address ED’s concerns. However, they have not and multiple correspondence between ED and CDE have not swayed them from their position.
ESSA only allows the use of alternative accountability metrics for schools missing the data required for accountability determinations. As California has the necessary data to make accountability determinations based upon all indicators, the “Modified Metrics” were not approved by ED.
As it currently stands, the denial of the amendments means that DASS schools will receive the 4-year cohort rate on the Graduation Indicator and will be held to the same cut scores on the five-by-five performance level grid as non-DASS schools on the Academic Indicator. Moreover, the impact begins with release of the 2022 Dashboard.
In response, SBE took action at the hearing to approve a request to the U.S. Department of Education for a waiver of the ESSA statute for DASS schools to, hopefully, allow the current DASS system to stay in place and maintain the modified measures.
COVID-19 State Plan Addendum
In October 2020, U.S. Department of Education offered the COVID-19 State Plan Addendum to states to allow them to modify their accountability systems described in their state plans to account for the lack of data due to the assessment and accountability waivers from the 2019–20 school year.
At the March hearing, SBE approved amending the ESEA State Plan by:
1) Revising the state’s long-term goals and interim progress by shifting the timeline forward by two years for measurements of interim progress; 2) Excluding the College/Career Indicator from the state’s accountability system for the 2021–22 school year due to the limitations of 2021 statewide grade eleven assessment data; 3) Shifting forward timelines by one year for identifying schools; and 4) Revising the entrance and exit criteria for schools identified for support.
The ED requires that California make comprehensive support and improvement and additional targeted support and improvement eligibility determinations using data from the 2022 Dashboard.
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