Dorn Releases Annual Measurable Objectives
OLYMPIA — September 27, 2012 — State Superintendent Randy Dorn unveiled a new federally approved accountability system today, which is part of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) flexibility request (waiver) granted to Washington state on July 6.
Prior to the waiver, ESEA required Washington state to release Adequate Yearly Progress results.
“The writers of the ESEA rules had the right goals in mind, but the methodology for determining whether schools were meeting students’ needs was too simplistic,” Dorn said. “The original goal was to achieve 100 percent proficiency by 2014. However, it was projected that 80 percent of the nation’s schools were on track to be identified as ‘failing’ by that deadline. At that point, due to sheer numbers, schools that were truly struggling might not get the support they need.”
The new system revolves around Annual Measurable Objectives. AMOs are derived by first calculating proficiency gaps for the “all students” group and every subgroup (for example, black or Hispanic students, or students receiving special education services) in a school. A proficiency gap is the percentage point difference between that group’s level of proficiency in the baseline year of 2011 and 100 percent. Washington state’s goal is to cut all proficiency gaps in half by 2017.
Because the proficiency gaps are calculated at the school level, targets are unique to each school and subgroup. To report testing results in a subgroup, schools and districts must have at least 20 students in that subgroup to ensure the data is statistically reliable.
“We have high expectations for all of our students,” Dorn said. “The targets set for 2017 are realistic expectations for schools and subgroups, but we will keep working so every student can go as far as their talents and abilities will take them.”
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The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is the primary agency charged with overseeing K–12 education in Washington state. Led by State School Superintendent Randy Dorn, OSPI works with the state’s 295 school districts and nine educational service districts to administer basic education programs and implement education reform on behalf of more than one million public school students.
OSPI provides equal access to all programs and services without discrimination based on sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, honorably discharged veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability. Questions and complaints of alleged discrimination should be directed to the Equity and Civil Rights Director at (360) 725-6162 or P.O. Box 47200, Olympia, WA 98504-7200.
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