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2 EDCAL March 20 , 2017

California School Dashboard offers multiple measures of school performance and progress

The State Board of Education and the California Department of Education have unveiled the California School Dashboard , a new website that provides parents , educators , and the public with important information they can use to evaluate schools and school districts in an easy-to-understand report card format .
The California School Dashboard is available at www . caschooldashboard . org . It is a critical piece of California ’ s new school accountability and continuous improvement system . The state ’ s former accountability system – the Academic Performance Index – relied exclusively on standardized tests and gave schools a single score . That system was suspended three years ago .
“ The California School Dashboard provides local communities with meaningful and relevant information on how well schools and districts are doing ,” said State Board of Education President Michael W . Kirst . “ It will help in local decision-making by highlighting both the progress of schools and student groups , shining a light on disparities and helping stakeholders pinpoint where resources should be directed .
“ As exciting a development as this is , it ’ s important to understand that the California School Dashboard itself is a work in progress . It will be a far more valuable tool one year from now and three years from now than it is today as more indicators come online , as feedback is incorporated , and as improvements are made .”
Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson called the launch a “ historic milestone ” in preparing students for success in 21st century college and careers .
“ The California School Dashboard is a resource unlike anything we ’ ve ever had before ,” Torlakson said . “ I think of it as a high-tech report card for our schools . Just as our children receive report cards with multiple grades in multiple subject areas , the California School Dashboard provides us with many different measures of a school ’ s performance — where it ’ s strong , where it needs to improve , how it ’ s doing over time .
“ The California School Dashboard is yet another example of the innovation and positive change taking place in our public school system , which is also evident in increased local control , more rigorous academic standards , cutting-edge online assessments , and billions of dollars in voter-approved school funding and school infrastructure improvement .”
The California School Dashboard incorporates six state performance measures and four local indicators ( six local indicators for county offices of education ). The six state measures are :
• Academic Indicator , which includes results on standardized tests .
• Career / College readiness .
• English Learner progress .
• Graduation rate .
• Suspension rate .
• Chronic absenteeism .
Information for two state indicators — Chronic Absenteeism and College / Career Readiness — and the six local indicators will be added as they become available . Local educational agencies and schools receive one of five color-coded performance levels for each state indicator for all students and for each student group . The performance levels are calculated based on how current performance compares to past performance . From highest to lowest , the five performance levels are blue , green , yellow , orange , and red . The four local indicators are :
• Basic services and school conditions .
• Implementation of state academic standards .
• Parent engagement .
• School climate . The two additional local indicators for county offices of education are :
• Coordination of services for expelled youth .
• Coordination of services for foster youth .
As an accountability and continuous improvement tool , the California School Dashboard will help the state identify schools and districts needing targeted assistance from the state , beginning in the 2017- 18 school year .
“ I applaud the State Board and CDE for putting equity front and center on the Dashboard ,” said El Dorado COE Superintendent Ed Manansala . “ The Equity Report will help our district and schools as they work to better align resources to improved outcomes for all students .”
“ L . A . Unified is very excited about the Dashboard and the new opportunities it provides for engaging with our students , families , and schools ,” said Michelle King , superintendent of LAUSD . “ This new system improves transparency by providing information on both academic and nonacademic factors that contribute to a child ’ s education . By shifting the focus from what we ’ ve done to how we can improve , the Dashboard will lead to real accountability and new opportunities to help our students succeed .”

K-12 , Community College committee meets to discuss workforce

Members of two statewide educational policy boards – one for K-12 , one for community colleges – met to discuss how the systems can work together to help more Californians find success in the job market .
Three members of the California State Board of Education and three from the California Community Colleges Board of Governors will come together to form the California Workforce Pathways Joint Advisory Committee . The new panel is a revived version of a group that met in previous decades with a narrow focus on vocational programs in high schools and community colleges . Those programs were largely “ terminal ,” meaning the courses did not encourage students to continue their education beyond a single course .
The newly formed committee will discuss career-themed and industry-linked programs and broader topics such as better alignment of high school courses and counseling with community college offerings to create a seamless , K-16 path and beyond . The group may also discuss possible federal reauthorization of the Perkins Act , which has provided federal funds for Career Technical Education focused on workforce development .
“ This is a revival of something that was done before but in a very new context ,” said State Board of Education President Michael W . Kirst , a professor emeritus of Education and Business Administration at Stanford University .
Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said there is great value in better collaboration between California ’ s educational systems .
“ Community colleges and the K-12 system must work closely together with each other and the business community to help our students have a smooth journey from high school to careers and college ,” he said .
Kirst chaired a similar committee in the 1970s and spearheaded formation of the new panel . Unlike other educational committees that assemble for specific purposes – a grant in common , for example – Kirst said the intention is for this committee to build a more permanent bridge . “ The objective is to build something lasting ,” Kirst said .
With more than 2.1 million students , the state ’ s community college system serves the vast majority of Californians seeking post-secondary education . It is the largest system of higher education in the United


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continuation high school in Shasta Union High School District and ACSA Board Director from Region 1 , participated in a panel to inform the Board of the unique circumstances students in alternative education settings face , and why a differentiated accountability system is necessary .
Legislative Advocate Martha Alvarez testified in strong support of the Board ’ s direction in implementing the new multidimensional accountability system .
“ To keep our state ’ s public schools moving forward , we need clear and useful accountability measures ,” she said . “ Measures that help us monitor what ’ s working and what isn ’ t , sensible ways to direct and track the
States and the nation ’ s largest provider of workforce training .
SBE members on the panel are Feliza Ortiz-Licon , Patricia Rucker and Ting Sun . Representing the Community College Board of Governors are Joseph Bielanski , Jeffrey Burdick and Pamela Haynes .
use of resources , and safeguards that ensure responsible actions across the system .”
Alvarez described the dashboard as a key methodology for school districts and schools to have increased access to the information they need to make the best decisions about how to direct their resources to improve the education of their children . This data places equity at the front and center of local conversations in efforts to close the achievement and opportunity gaps , a key priority for ACSA .
“ We are encouraged by the Board ’ s focus on continuous improvement ( through a lens of status and change ) and on building the capacity of the school , district and county leaders in an effort to improve the opportunities available to all of our students ,” she said .
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