The new report card would be made up of 4 components and they are all graded separately and given equal weight in determining the final grade. The components are:
1) The scores on the proficiencies
2) The performance index
3) The value-add assessment
4) A new metric designed to measure the success a district has at eliminating the achievement gap
The overall grade is determined by averaging the grades on the 4 metrics.
Let's look at each in turn.
At least through 2015, the proficiency tests will remain largely as-is, cut scores and all, so, for example, a district will continue to receive credit for passing the 6th grade reading proficiency if 75% of the students get a 35% on the test. If you pass 90% of the available proficiencies, your district receive an "A" on that particular metric with 80% required to get a "B".
The performance index metric attempts to give the district credit for those students scoring in the "advanced" and "accelerated" range on the tests, but as we see from the charts in the previous posts, the cut off scores for advanced and accelerated remain at the same low levels that they were before, therefore, the performance index metric should be similarly unchanged. The difference is in the score required to receive an "A". If you receive a performance index of 90% of the maximum, or 108 out of a possible 120 points, you get your "A". Only one school in Worthington, Evening Street Elementary, received a performance index in excess of 108. It's score was 108.8, however, we must remember that the performance index is only concerned with how many students clear the proficient, accelerated and advanced bar and not necessarily by how much those students passed the bar. Let's take an example from a school that would narrowly miss getting that magic 108 to receive the "A" on the performance index component.
|Performance Index Calculation for Phoenix Middle School, Worthington OH|
Value-Added: While performance scores demonstrate a student’s level of proficiency, Value-Added
measures the effects of schools on their students’ growth. It is calculated only for schools with students in any Grades 4-8. Ohio, using the SAS® at EVAAS® model computes a Value-Added measure for each school and district in English language arts and mathematics and reports whether the expected growth has been met (a year’s growth in a year’s time), exceeded (more than a year’s growth in a year’s time) or not met (less than a year’s growth in a year’s time).
Interested readers can learn more about value-add here.
For purposes of this discussion, value-add was not changed in the new state report card. What was changed was the impact that value-add could have on the overall grade. Prior to the new state report card methodology, value-add was used to modify the overall grade. This was the algorithm used:
|Value Add impact on final report card grade|
Thus, under the old system, it was possible to be "excellent" with a performance index of 90 or if you met 20 of the 26 standards as long as your value-add scores indicated "above expected" growth for two years running. Under the new system, that will no longer be possible.
ANNUAL MEASURABLE OBJECTIVES
The latest edition to the eduspeak vocabulary is "Annual Measurable Objectives" or AMO's.
The AMO metric is designed to replace the previous level of proficiency that was required by No Child Left Behind. NCLB required, by 2014, that 100% of kids achieve proficiency. Scholars can argue whether that was ever a realistic goal, but states eagerly took the money offered by the federal government back in 2001 and then back loaded the proficiency requirements. Fast forward 10 years, and as the mandatory levels of proficiency started to increase as we got closer to 2014, panic set it. It is fair to say that the entire purpose of the waiver request is to relieve Ohio of the burden of a 100% proficiency requirement and the associated penalties when they are not met. The new goals, the "AMO's" are derived by taking the percentage of Ohio's kids that are currently deemed as not proficient in reading (18.1%), establishing a somewhat arbitrary goal of getting half of them to proficient within 6 years (e.g. 9% additional proficiency in 6 years) and using equal increments, so the bar is moved by 1.5% each year. This would then apply to all subgroups. A similar methodology is employed for the graduation percentage component of the annual measurable objectives. A somewhat complex calculation than goes into arriving at a final letter grade for the achievement gap component of the state report card.
The big difference between AYP and AMO's is this. In order for AYP to negatively impact a final rating on the existing report card, you would have to miss AYP in the SAME subgroup for three (3) consecutive years. Of course, given the requirement to be 100% proficient, absent the waiver, that would happen to every district sooner or later, but not for several years. With the new methodology, AMO's are a full partner in the calculation and the failure to meet the annual objectives could impact your rating in the current year.
This new system will be in place, assuming the legislature goes along, for the current year (2011-2012), so it is important to understand the differences between the old methodology and the new methodology, but it is also important to understand that the State Report Card will be changing fairly dramatically a few years from now to meet the demands of the assessment component of the common core.
The new methodology may therefore have a life span of a few years until the Common Core assessments kick in. Where this leaves Worthington is a bit unknown but as with most things, knowledge is power so understanding the methodology behind the new report card should give us a leg up on figuring out whether Worthington will be "A" rated or, if not, why not.