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The New World of School Accountability

Samantha Batel argues that states should use a broader range of indicators of school quality.

Authors

  • Samantha Batel

Given November’s election results, there is a lot of uncertainty about the future of education policy. Yet at least one thing remains clear: Under the new K-12 federal education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), states are required to put in place new systems to identify low-performing schools for improvement by the 2017-18 school year.

The U.S. Department of Education’s accountability regulations extend this deadline by a year, but whether the regulations will pass muster under a new presidential administration remains to be seen. In the face of the unknown, state policymakers are drafting plans to meet the new law’s requirements. Much of their attention is focused on which indicators of school quality or student success they will use to provide a more holistic measure of school performance than the test-based measures of the past. Under ESSA, these new indicators may measure factors such as student engagement, postsecondary readiness, and school climate and safety.

The above excerpt was originally published in Governing. Click here to view the full article.

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Authors

Samantha Batel

Senior Policy Analyst