School district progress status released
Adequate Yearly Progress results for the 2011-12 school year were higher for Kenai Peninsula Borough School District schools than the previous year announced KPBSD Superintendent Dr. Steve Atwater during a district-wide inservice for teachers and administrators last month. Seventy percent of KPBSD schools made AYP during the 2011-2012 school year, up from 68 percent in 2010-11. Statewide 46.5 percent of Alaska schools made AYP.
In 2011-12, 31 of KPBSD’s 44 assessed schools made AYP, in spite of an increase in the number of targets considered in the AYP calculation. In 2010-11, 30 KPBSD schools made AYP with the rising standards. In 2011-12, the number of indicators or targets used to assess AYP jumped from 31 to 40 for schools with a twelfth grade in the 2011-12 academic year, and the number of assessed targets district-wide jumped to 204 possible, from 137 for the previous year. The number of assessed targets is dependent upon the size of school and size of sub-groups.
“I am pleased that our AYP results are slightly better than last year and that when compared to the rest of Alaska we have a much higher percentage of schools making AYP. I find it ironic that of the 13 schools that did not make the mark this year, 10 showed improvements. Another important point to consider is that there are between 31 and 40 targets that a school must meet to make AYP. Before jumping to conclusions about one of our schools, I encourage the public to take some time to investigate why a school is being labeled in this way. While AYP is an important designation, it may not be a defining one,” said Dr. Atwater.
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) is the cornerstone of the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) act passed in 2002. AYP is measured annually for individual schools and school districts. States created a graduated timeline of proficiency marks called Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs). Every year the AMOs were expected to rise toward 100 percent student proficiency (2014) in language arts and math. The state of Alaska is joining other states, and applying for a federal waiver from some of the accountability requirements of NCLB, in particular the rising AMOs to 100 percent proficiency for every student. The waiver allows the state to hold AMOs at the 2010-11 level.
Measuring Accountability: School districts and schools are held accountable for student scores in language arts and math, and for their students’ participation rate. They also are held accountable for attendance and 12th grade graduation rates. The AMOs used to calculate AYP were frozen at the 2010-11 rate. For example:
• 2009-10 Language Arts: 77.18 percent Math: 66.09 percent
• 2010-11 Language Arts: 82.88 percent Math: 74.57 percent
• 2011-12 Language Arts: 82.88 percent Math: 74.57 percent (rate remains the same)
The AYP score is calculated from Standard Based Assessment (SBA) scores. The bar for a proficiency score is 300; the KPBSD average is much higher than this. In April 2012, the KPBSD average scale scores from SBA tests was:
• Language Arts comprised of Reading: 391 and Writing: 376; Math: 362.
Schools as well as specific subgroups of students within each school are expected to meet AYP; if one subgroup does not, the school as a whole does not. To meet AYP, individual schools (and school districts) are now rated in 40 categories of accountability. Assessed students are categorized in ten ways: school or district wide; and in nine subgroups: African-American, Alaska Native/American Indian, Asian, Caucasian, Hispanic, Multi-Ethnic (listed as Two or More Races), Economically Disadvantaged, Students with Disabilities, and Limited English Proficient Students.
For Elementary schools: Multiply the three fields—language arts scores, math scores and participation rate—by the ten ways to categorize students and the result is 30 categories of accountability. The 31st category is the attendance rate.
For schools with graduating seniors, add ten more to the elementary calculation: one for the school and nine for the subgroup graduation rates, for a total of 40.
Individual school AYP results and AYP overview: are at www.eed.state.ak.us. Results for the district as a whole will be available in September 2012.