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News Release - State Board approves adjustments to elementary and middle school accountability frameworks for 2021

Oct. 10, 2019               

State Board approves adjustments to elementary and middle school accountability frameworks for 2021

Rules approved for grant programs that expand options for high school students

DENVER - The board approved adjustments to the elementary and middle school accountability frameworks, the state’s system for the state’s system for evaluating the performance of schools. 

The changes to the frameworks are designed to provide a more accurate reflection of a school’s success in teaching students and getting them to meet grade-level expectations. The adjustments will be applied to the elementary and middle school ratings beginning in fall 2021.  

The board’s vote today followed a year-long process of studying the issue, exploring options, reviewing impact data and gathering feedback. 

The board increased the cut score for the elementary and middle school Performance rating category by 8 percentage points, from 53% to 61%.  This means schools will need to earn at least 61% of total framework points in order to receive a Performance rating starting in 2021.  The change is intended to better align the state’s accountability ratings with the proportion of students meeting or exceeding grade-level achievement expectations. 

As required by state statute, the board also added the On-Track Growth metric into the frameworks, which measures whether lower-performing students are growing fast enough to catch up to grade-level expectations and whether students who are currently meeting expectations have enough growth to keep up their performance. 

The On-Track Growth measure sets an expectation that lower-performing students will show enough academic growth to advance one performance level on state assessments within two years. Students who are currently performing at grade level will be expected to show enough growth to maintain grade-level proficiency for three years. 

The board will continue to discuss the accountability system as a whole as it considers adjustments to the high school and district frameworks and issues grants to support work in building and implementing local accountability systems that complement the state system. 

The board also began its required annual discussion to set targets for achievement, growth and postsecondary workforce readiness used to determine school and district ratings. The board is expected to vote on the targets for the 2020 performance frameworks in November as required by state statute. 

Board requests staff recommendation on Pueblo School for the Arts and Sciences

The board directed the Colorado Department of Education to review and make a recommendation on a request from Pueblo School for the Arts and Sciences, a charter school in Pueblo School District No. 60, around the funding amount the school received from the district. The charter school seeks to determine whether Pueblo 60 improperly withheld any portion of the school’s funds allocated under the School Finance Act. The board will vote on the department’s recommendation at a future board meeting. 

Rulemaking hearings:

In other actions, the board: