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August 2, 2011
Student Achievement Increases but Fewer Oregon Schools Meet Federal Standards Under New Adequate Yearly Progress Targets
SALEM – State Schools Superintendent Susan Castillo today released the preliminary 2010-11 ratings for Oregon public schools under the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) standards (formerly known as No Child Left Behind). Federal Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) targets increased substantially from last year and despite strong gains in student achievement, fewer schools met these higher targets. Fifty-four percent of Oregon schools met the federal AYP standard this year, down from seventy-one percent from last year’s final 2009-10 AYP results.
Increasing the Targets and Raising the Bar
Two changes converged this year, resulting in fewer schools meeting AYP. The first change was the increase in the AYP targets from 59% in math and 60% in reading in 2009-10 to 70% in both subjects this year. The last increase was in the 2007-08 school year when the targets increased from 49% to 59% for math and from 50% to 60% for reading. The second change was the increase in math achievement standards which went into effect this past school year. In October 2010, the State Board of Education adopted higher expectations for elementary and middle school students in math to provide students, parents, and teachers with better information about how prepared students are to meet high school diploma requirements and graduate ready for college and career.
“Fewer schools are meeting AYP this year, and in part that is because of decisions we made here at the state level to raise the bar and ask more of our students,” said State Schools Superintendent Susan Castillo. “But these results do not mean that our students or our schools are doing worse—in fact, we know from preliminary assessment results that student performance is on the rise. Students and schools are rising to the challenge of these new higher expectations, and our state has taken an important step toward ensuring that all of our students graduate ready to compete in our 21st century workplace. I know firsthand the good work going on in our schools to improve opportunities and outcomes for kids, but unfortunately, the results I am releasing today do not reflect the growth and innovation taking place in Oregon schools. However, these results are a clear reminder that we are not yet where we need to be. We need to keep focused on providing all students with the instruction and supports they need to succeed. I will continue to fight for reforms to these federal regulations so that our students and schools receive both the recognition and the support they deserve.”
A closer look at AYP—Oregon’s 2010-11 Preliminary AYP reports show:
Under Oregon’s AYP plan for 2010-11, 70% of all students in public schools must reach state benchmarks in English language arts and mathematics. To meet AYP, public schools must meet these annual performance targets for both the overall student population and for any demographic group within the school that includes 42 or more students. These demographic groups are socio-economic status, English proficiency, race/ethnicity, and special education. Schools must also meet a participation target and an attendance or graduation target to meet overall AYP.
Consequences for not making AYP (Title I schools)
One of the purposes of the Preliminary AYP report is to identify schools needing improvement, especially those serving a high percentage of children in poverty and receiving targeted federal funds (Title I funds). This year, 90 schools have been placed on the preliminary “In Need of Improvement” list. Schools on this list accept Title I funds and have not met AYP for at least two consecutive years in the same subject area. Schools that accept federal Title I funds and do not make AYP are required to provide students with the opportunity to transfer to another school in the district. Title I schools that do not make AYP for a third consecutive year must provide students with supplemental services, such as tutoring or after-school assistance. Schools that do not meet AYP targets beyond three years are required to take additional corrective actions. For more information regarding resources for schools in Title I school improvement status, including information on assistance and interventions, refer to the Title I-A School Improvement Resource Manual at: http://www.ode.state.or.us/search/page/?id=1942.
The Need for Reauthorization and Reform
The federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), formerly known as No Child Left Behind, is currently awaiting congressional reauthorization. The US Department of Education has indicated that they would like to introduce additional flexibility into the law to help states and districts better meet the needs of students and schools. However, reauthorization plans have been stalled in Congress and many states are expressing frustration with the pace of reform.
“This decade-old law has served an important role in shaping education in our country—focusing on the importance of standards-based education and shining the light on key issues like the academic achievement gap,” said Superintendent Castillo. “However, this law is long overdue for reform. It fails to account for individual student growth, offers no real flexibility to our schools, and hinders, rather than supports, educational innovation. Education in Oregon, and around the country, has changed dramatically in the past ten years. We are increasing expectations from elementary through high school to ensure all of our students graduate ready for college and career. We have adopted the Common Core—rigorous national standards that put our students on a level playing field with their peers around the country. We are implementing educational models based on proficiency, personalization, and individual growth. And we are working with the governor’s office to build a more seamless education system which connects students to services and supports Pre-K through higher education. In short, we are moving ahead and creating the 21st century education system we know our students need and deserve. Since Congress has not acted on reauthorization, Oregon is joining states from around the country in calling for waivers and additional flexibility so that we can better meet the needs of our students.”
Oregon is working with the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and leaders from states around the country on designing a next generation accountability system. The group is calling for federal reauthorization of the law with increased support for state leadership. The partner states want high expectations and accountability for their schools but they also want the federal government to grant states authority for continuous innovation and improvement. Learn more about this work and the Next-Generation State Accountability Systems Taskforce here .
AYP Resources and Links
• For an audio clip of Superintendent Castillo, go to: http://video.orvsd.org/ode/AYP-2011.MP3
• For an FAQ on AYP and Schools in Improvement, go to: http://www.ode.state.or.us/superintendent/priorities/2010-11-adequate-yearly-progress-faq.pdf
• For AYP reports on districts and schools, go to: http://www.ode.state.or.us/data/reportcard/reports.aspx
• For the preliminary list of 2011-12 Title I Schools in Improvement, go to: http://www.ode.state.or.us/search/page/?id=1942
• For more information on AYP, go to: http://www.ode.state.or.us/search/page/?=1193
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