BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 1159
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:   April 3, 2013

                           ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION
                                Joan Buchanan, Chair
              AB 1159 (Blumenfield) - As Introduced:  February 22, 2013
           
          SUBJECT  :   Pupils:  achievement data:  charter schools

           SUMMARY  :   Requires the California Department of Education (CDE)  
          to provide a school district with individual pupil test score  
          data of pupils who attend a charter school for which the school  
          district is the chartering authority, along with the unique  
          pupil identification number of each of those pupils, in  
          accordance with the federal Family Educational Rights and  
          Privacy Act of 1974.    

           FISCAL EFFECT  :   According to a Senate Appropriations Committee  
          analysis of an identical bill last year, significant workload  
          increase to CDE to share charter school pupil-level achievement  
          data with the authorizing districts.  

           COMMENTS  :   According to the author, California has established  
          rigorous academic standards for its students and has developed  
          specific measures to determine if these standards are being  
          achieved.  Existing law establishes several measures of student  
          performance, such as the Standardized Testing and Reporting  
          (STAR) Program, and requires all schools, including charter  
          schools, to report results to the CDE.  Some charter schools  
          independently report the information directly to CDE, while  
          other schools report the information through the school district  
          which authorized it.  Currently, a school district that wishes  
          to obtain student-level achievement data for students who attend  
          an independently reporting charter school within its  
          jurisdiction must request the information separately from each  
          of the various schools, costing time and resources that school  
          districts cannot afford.  

          In 2010, LAUSD attempted to get test data directly from the CDE  
          for students attending charter schools that were authorized by  
          the district.  In his October 12, 2010, response to this  
          request, Superintendent of Public Instruction O'Connell wrote,  
          "Current state law, California Education Code Section 60607  
          indicates that: 

               Any pupil results or a record of accomplishment shall be  








                                                                  AB 1159
                                                                  Page  2

               private, and may not be released to any person, other than  
               the pupil's parent or guardian and a teacher, counselor or  
               administrator directly involved with the pupil, without the  
               express written consent of either the parent or guardian of  
               the pupil if the pupil is a minor, or the pupil if the  
               pupil has reached the age of majority or is emancipated. 

          Because of the legal restrictions imposed on the release of  
          student-level assessment data, the CDE is unable to fulfill your  
          current request.  If you received these data in the past they  
          were delivered in error."

          Accordingly, LAUSD sponsored AB 1919 (Brownley) in 2012.  In  
          support of that bill, LAUSD argued that increasing student  
          achievement is a key goal for school districts, and an analysis  
          of pupil data is necessary to ensure students' needs are met.   
          Access to individual achievement data is important to assess how  
          students are faring.  With this information, districts can  
          determine if sub-groups such as English-learners, low income  
          students or certain demographic groups are succeeding.  For  
          charter schools that are authorized by a school district,  
          current law only allows the district access to aggregate  
          school-level data.  Given that districts are responsible for  
          renewing school charter agreements, access to pupil data for a  
          district's charters is necessary to properly evaluate the  
          performance of students at the charter school.  Without this  
          information, it is difficult for districts to know if the needs  
          of certain groups of students are being met by the charter  
          school.  Access to this information through the CDE allows  
          school districts to get an accurate, complete picture of student  
          achievement at all of its schools.

          AB 1919 was vetoed by the Governor with the following message:

               "This bill would require the State Department of  
               Education to send  individual  pupil level data to  
               school districts that request the information.  The  
               data would cover each and every student attending a  
               charter school the district authorizes.

               "Authorizing districts may already collect this data,  
               so another law is unnecessary.  The locals can handle  
               it."










                                                                  AB 1159
                                                                  Page  3


           REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :   

           Support 
           
          California Charter Schools Association Advocates

           Opposition 
           
          None received
           
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Rick Pratt / ED. / (916) 319-2087