BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                    AB 2548


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          Date of Hearing:  April 20, 2016


                           ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION


                              Patrick O'Donnell, Chair


          AB 2548  
          (Weber) - As Amended April 11, 2016


          SUBJECT:  School accountability:  statewide accountability  
          system


          SUMMARY:  Establishes a Statewide Accountability System, as  
          specified.  Specifically, this bill:  


          1)Expresses the intent of the Legislature to do the following:


             a)   Establish a coherent, aligned local-state-federal  
               accountability system that addresses state, local, parent,  
               community, and public needs, as well as federal  
               requirements;


             b)   Ensure ambitious, statewide standards for performance  
               and expectations for improvement that encourage continuous  
               improvement and the closure of opportunity and achievement  
               gaps; and


             c)   Establish a mechanism using multiple measures that  
               meaningfully differentiates the performance of schools and  
               identifies schools and local educational agencies in need  








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               of technical assistance, support, and intervention.


          2)Expresses the intent of Legislature that the accountability  
            system continue to support and advance the framework  
            established by the local control funding formula (LCFF) and  
            California's emphasis on continuous improvement, technical  
            assistance, and support.


          3)Requires the State Board of Education (SBE) to adopt a  
            statewide accountability system that does the following:


             a)   Satisfies the accountability system requirements of the  
               recently-enacted  federal Every Student Succeeds Act  
               (ESSA);


             b)   Aligns California's local control framework with the  
               need to identify, support, and improve California's highest  
               need schools. In doing so, requires the SBE to do all of  
               the following:


               i)     Set clear, ambitious, statewide standards for  
                 performance and expectations for improvement toward  
                 specified key indicators, and requires these standards to  
                 be differentiated by pupil subgroup so that subgroups  
                 that start off at lower performance levels make greater  
                 growth to achieve the statewide standards;


               ii)    Establish a mechanism to meaningfully differentiate  
                 the performance of all public schools, to identify local  
                 educational agencies for purposes of support and  
                 intervention on an annual basis based on outcomes for all  
                 pupils and for each subgroup of pupils using specified  
                 multiple measures identified in paragraph, and to do all  








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                 of the following:


                  (1)       Distinguish multiple levels of performance for  
                    purposes of continuous improvement, transparency,  
                    meaningful stakeholder engagement, recognition, and  
                    support, including the identification of the  
                    following:


                    (a)         Not less than the lowest-performing 5  
                      percent of all schools receiving federal Title I  
                      funds and all public high schools in the state  
                      failing to graduate one-third or more of their  
                      pupils;


                    (b)         All schools in which any subgroup of  
                      pupils is consistently underperforming, as  
                      determined by the state board, based on specified  
                      key indicators; and


                    (c)         All schools where any one subgroup of  
                      pupils, on its own, would lead that school to be in  
                      the lowest 5 percent of schools for pupils overall.


                  (2)       Support parents and guardians in making  
                    informed school decisions on behalf of their children;  
                    and


                  (3)       Enable school districts, county offices of  
                    education, the CDE, and the California Collaborative  
                    for Educational Excellence (CCEE) to identify schools  
                    for recognition, support, and assistance and ensure  
                    that support and assistance is provided to at least  
                    those schools identified as in need of improvement.








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               iii)   Comply with all notification, stakeholder  
                 engagement, school support, and improvement activities  
                 required by ESSA.


             c)   Relies upon data from key indicators established  
               pursuant to evaluation rubrics adopted by the SBE.  At a  
               minimum, those key indicators shall include, all of the  
               following:


               i)     For elementary and middle schools:


                  (1)       A measure of pupil achievement in at least  
                    English language arts, mathematics, and science;


                  (2)       A measure of academic growth;


                  (3)       A measure of progress toward English  
                    proficiency;


                  (4)       A measure of chronic absenteeism; and


                  (5)       A measure of school climate.


               ii)    For high schools:


                  (1)       A measure of pupil achievement in at least  
                    English language arts, mathematics, and science;









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                  (2)       A measure of graduation rates


                  (3)       A measure of progress toward English  
                    proficiency;


                  (4)       A measure of college and career readiness;


                  (5)       A measure of chronic absenteeism; and


                  (6)       A measure of school climate.


             d)   Specifies that the SBE is not precluded from including  
               additional statewide measures that can be disaggregated by  
               subgroup in the accountability system for purposes of  
               meaningful differentiation of all schools or from grouping  
               the measures into common clusters


             e)   Expresses the intent of the Legislature that the state  
               will continue to use the SBE-adopted evaluation rubrics and  
               all indicators identified as state priorities and specified  
               pupil subgroups for purposes of continuous improvement and  
               to guide the provision of technical assistance, support,  
               and intervention.


             f)   Provides that, in order to comply with ESSA, the  
               following academic indicators shall receive substantial  
               weight and, in aggregate, much greater weight than is  
               afforded to all other indicators:


               i)     A measure of pupil achievement in at least English  








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                 language arts, mathematics, and science;


               ii)    A measure of academic growth; and


               iii)   A measure of progress toward English proficiency.


             g)   Provides the CCEE, county superintendents of schools,  
               and the public with data to be used in a multitiered system  
               of review and assistance. Notwithstanding the key  
               indicators used for purposes of paragraph (2), in  
               identifying appropriate assistance for a school or local  
               educational agency, the CCEE and the county superintendents  
               of schools shall analyze data aligned with all the state  
               priorities established pursuant to Sections 52060 and 52066  
               in order to align the level of support, collaboration, and  
               intervention to the needs of the local educational agency  
               or individual school or schools.


             h)   Ensures the creation of a data and reporting system that  
               provides meaningful and accessible information on school  
               and school district performance that is displayed through  
               an electronic platform and gives parents and the public the  
               ability to easily access, compare, analyze, and summarize  
               school reports, pupil performance results, and the progress  
               made by schools and school districts in reaching all of the  
               state's priority areas.


             i)   Expresses the intent of the Legislature to ensure that  
               any Web-based data and analysis tools should enable all  
               stakeholders to readily identify strengths and weaknesses,  
               identify inequities between schools and subgroups of pupils  
               across multiple measures, monitor academic achievement and  
               improvement, provide for meaningful differentiation, and  
               enable users to download data and reports in  








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               machine-readable formats.


          4)Requires key indicators to be used to identify schools, school  
            districts, and county offices of education for intervention  
            and assistance.                    


          EXISTING LAW:  


          1)Requires the SPI, with the approval of the SBE, to develop an  
            Academic Performance Index (API), to measure the performance  
            of schools and school districts, especially the academic  
            performance of pupils.


          2)Requires a school or school district to demonstrate comparable  
            improvement in academic achievement as measured by the API by  
            all numerically significant pupil subgroups at the school or  
            school district, including:


             a)   Ethnic subgroups;


             b)   Socioeconomically disadvantaged pupils;


             c)   English learners;


             d)   Pupils with disabilities;


             e)   Foster youth; and 


             f)   Homeless youth.








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          3)Requires the API to consist of a variety of indicators  
            currently reported to the CDE, including, but not limited to,  
            the results of the California Assessment of Student  
            Performance and Progress (CAASPP); attendance rates for pupils  
            in elementary schools, middle schools, and secondary schools;  
            and the graduation rates for pupils in secondary schools.


          4)Authorizes the SPI, with the approval of the SBE, to also  
            incorporate into the API the rates at which pupils  
            successfully promote from one grade to the next in middle  
            school and high school, and successfully matriculate from  
            middle school to high school.                     


          5)Requires the SPI to develop and the SBE to adopt statewide  
            performance and expected annual percentage growth targets for  
            all schools based on their API baseline score from the  
            previous year.


          6)Requires school districts and county offices of education  
            (COEs) to adopt and annually update local control and  
            accountability plans (LCAPs), which describe the annual goals  
            for all pupils and each subgroup of pupils and the specific  
            actions that will be taken to achieve those goals.


          7)Requires each LCAP to address eight state priorities:


             a)   The degree to which the teachers of the school district  
               are appropriately assigned and fully credentialed in the  
               subject areas, and, for the pupils they are teaching, every  
               pupil in the school district has sufficient access to  
               standards-aligned instructional materials. 









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             b)   Implementation of the academic content and performance  
               standards adopted by SBE, including how the programs and  
               services will enable English learners to access the common  
               core academic content standards and the English language  
               development standards adopted by the SBE.  


             c)   Parental involvement, including efforts the school  
               district makes to seek parent input in making decisions for  
               the school district and each individual schoolsite, and  
               including how the school district will promote parental  
               participation in programs for unduplicated pupils and  
               individuals with exceptional needs.


             d)   Pupil achievement, as measured by all of the following,  
               as applicable:


               i)     Statewide assessments;


               ii)    The API;


               iii)   The percentage of pupils who have successfully  
                 completed courses that satisfy the requirements for  
                 entrance to the University of California and the  
                 California State University, or career technical  
                 education sequences or programs of study that align with  
                 state board-approved career technical education standards  
                 and frameworks; 

               iv)    The percentage of English learner pupils who make  
                 progress toward English proficiency as measured by the  
                 California English Language Development Test or any  
                 subsequent assessment of English proficiency, as  
                 certified by the state board;








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               v)     The English learner reclassification rate;

               vi)    The percentage of pupils who have passed an advanced  
                 placement examination with a score of 3 or higher; and

               vii)   The percentage of pupils who participate in, and  
                 demonstrate college preparedness pursuant to, the Early  
                 Assessment Program or any subsequent assessment of  
                 college preparedness.

             e)   Pupil engagement, as measured by all of the following,  
               as applicable:

               i)     School attendance rates;

               ii)    Chronic absenteeism rates;

               iii)   Middle school dropout rates; and 

               iv)    High school dropout and graduation rates.

             f)   School climate, as measured by all of the following, as  
               applicable:

               i)     Pupil suspension rates;

               ii)    Pupil expulsion rates; and

               iii)   Other local measures, including surveys of pupils,  
                 parents, and teachers on the sense of safety and school  
                 connectedness.

             g)   The extent to which pupils have access to, and are  
               enrolled in, a broad course of study; and

             h)   Pupil outcomes, if available, in other specified, as  
               applicable.









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          8)Establishes a system of interventions and support for school  
            districts and COEs that fail to meet performance or growth  
            standards.

          9)Establishes the CCEE to provide advice and assistance to LEAs  
            upon request of the LEA or if the LEA has been identified as  
            needing intervention and support.

          10)Requires the SBE, on or before October 1, 2016, to adopt  
            evaluation rubrics for all of the following purposes:

             a)   To assist a school district, COE, or charter school in  
               evaluating its strengths, weaknesses, and areas that  
               require improvement;

             b)   To assist a county superintendent of schools in  
               identifying school districts and charter schools in need of  
               technical assistance, and the specific priorities upon  
               which the technical assistance should be focused; and

             c)   To assist the SPI in identifying school districts for  
               which is warranted.

          11)Requires the evaluation rubrics to reflect a holistic,  
            multidimensional assessment of school district and individual  
            schoolsite performance and shall include all of the eight  
            state priorities. 

          12)Requires the SBE, as part of the evaluation rubrics to adopt  
            standards for school district and individual schoolsite  
            performance and expectations for improvement in regard to each  
            of the eight state priorities.

          13)Establishes the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA),  
            which requires states to establish their own accountability  
            systems that include the following indicators:

             a)   Proficiency in reading and math;









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             b)   Graduation rates for high schools;

             c)   English language proficiency;

             d)   For elementary and middle schools, student growth or  
               another indicator that is valid, reliable, and statewide;  
               and

             e)   At least one other indicator of school quality or  
               success, such as measures of safety, student engagement, or  
               educator engagement.

          14)Requires the accountability system to have substantial  
            weights on indicators a) through d) and, in aggregate,  
            indicators a) through d) mush weigh more than indicator e).

          15)Requires states, at least once every three years, to identify  
            the lowest performing 5% of Title I schools and all high  
            schools with a graduation rate that is below 67% for  
            comprehensive support.




          FISCAL EFFECT:  State-mandated local program


          COMMENTS:  


          A brief history of accountability in California.  In 1999, the  
          Legislature and Governor enacted the Public School  
          Accountability Act of 1999 (PSAA), which established a  
          state-wide accountability system based primarily on student  
          scores on state, standards-aligned assessments.  The PSAA set a  
          target API score of 800 for all schools.  If a school's base API  
          was below 800, that school was assigned an annual growth target  
          equal to 5% of the difference between 800 and its base API.   
          Thus, the PSAA held schools accountable for growth.








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          The PSAA was followed by the enactment of the No Child Left  
          Behind Act (NCLB), which established a federal accountability  
          system.  NCLB evaluated schools on the basis of Adequate Yearly  
          Progress (AYP).  AYP measured the percentage of pupils who meet  
          grade level standards.  This measures increases in the number of  
          pupils who meet minimum standards, but it was not a measure of  
          overall academic growth.


          More recently, California adopted the Common Core State  
          Standards (CCSS), which created a need to revise the state  
          assessments to bring them into alignment with the new standards.  
           The new assessments were developed by the multi-state  
          SmarterBalanced consortium, of which California is a member.   
          Except for pilot and field tests, the SmarterBalanced tests,  
          which are computer-assisted, were administered for the first  
          time in the Spring of 2015.


          During this time, it also became clear that an accountability  
          system based primarily on student scores has undesirable  
          consequences, such as teaching to the test and narrowing the  
          curriculum to only those academic areas (English language arts,  
          mathematics, and science) that are tested, which result in  
          providing incomplete and inaccurate information about the  
          performance of individual schools.  Accordingly, the Legislature  
          enacted legislation directing the SPI to make recommendations  
          regarding a new approach to accountability based on multiple  
          measures (SB 1458, Steinberg, Chapter 577, Statutes of 2012 and  
          AB 484, Bonilla, Chapter 489, Statutes of 2013.)  In the  
          meantime, California has suspended its use of the API.


          Current status of accountability.  In 2013, California enacted  
          the LCFF and established the requirement for districts and COEs  
          to adopt and annually update LCAPs.  While this was a  
          fundamental change in how the state funds its schools, it was  








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          also a fundamental change in the state's approach to  
          accountability by putting more emphasis on local accountability  
          through the LCAP process and establishing a system of continuous  
          improvement for all schools.  However, schools and school  
          districts may still be identified by county superintendents of  
          schools and the SPI as needing intervention and support


          In this changing context, the SPI established the Accountability  
          and Continuous Improvement Task Force to make recommendations  
          regarding the state's accountability system.  The Task Force,  
          which began meeting in September 2015, consists of 30 members  
          representing a broad cross section of the education and academic  
          communities, as well as organizations representing parents and  
          other stakeholders.  Children Now, the sponsor of this bill, is  
          represented on the Task Force.


          The Task Force is in the process of preparing a final report,  
          which will be presented to the SBE in May.  One of the guiding  
          principles of the Task Force is to align state and federal  
          accountability and continuous improvements systems to create one  
          single integrated system for use by the state, COEs, LEA's, and  
          schools.  At its February 2016 meeting, the SBE received  
          information from the CDE on the potential architecture of this  
          unified system.  The diagram below shows this potential system.


          As the diagram shows, the first level of accountability is at  
          the LEA level, and centers on the LCAP, which must address the  
          eight state priorities.  Each LCAP describes the goals of the  
          LEA with respect to the priorities and the specific actions the  
          district will take to achieve those goals.  After the evaluation  
          rubrics are adopted, LEAs will use them to measure their own  
          progress toward achieving their goals.  LEAs are required to  
          involve all local stakeholders in the development of the LCAP.  


          The next step is the establishment of the evaluation rubrics  








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          (represented by the middle column), which the SBE is required to  
          adopt by October 1, 2016.   Existing law requires the rubrics to  
          be based on the eight state priorities, and they will also be  
          used to develop the key indicators for ESSA accountability.  The  
          rubrics will also be used to support the local planning and  
          review processes that are part of developing the LCAP.  This  
          step also includes organizing the evaluation rubrics into key  
          indicators, which is needed for compliance with ESSA.


          The third column represents the use of the rubrics and key  
          indicators to identify districts and schools in need of  
          assistance and to inform the assistance and support that is  
          needed.  The goal is have the key indicators be congruent with  
                           the evaluation rubrics to establish clear, consistent criteria  
          for evaluating LEAs and that LEAs can use to evaluate  
          themselves.


          This bill preempts an ongoing process.  As directed by the  
          Legislature, the CDE has been engaged in a process of consulting  
          stakeholders, convening task forces, and working with the SBE to  
          establish a new accountability system.  This bill imposes a new  
          accountability system before this process has been allowed to  
          play out.  In addition, by enacting provisions related to the  
          requirements of ESSA, this bill presupposes the outcome of final  
          regulations from the U. S. Department of Education, which are  
          not expected until later this year.


          This bill narrows accountability.  Under existing law, LEAs will  
          be identified for technical assistance based on their  
          performance relative to the eight state priorities, which  
          include academic outcomes, but also includes other factors such  
          as parental involvement, pupil engagement, and school climate.   
          The statutory goal is to have a system that "reflect[s] a  
          holistic, multidimensional assessment of school district and  
          individual schoolsite performance" (Education Code Section  
          52064.5.  This bill bases the identification of LEAs for  








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          technical assistance only on the key indicators, which are based  
          solely on academic performance.  This reverses the direction the  
          Legislature has taken to have a multiple measures approach to  
          accountability.


          Arguments in support.  Supporters argue that this bill is needed  
          to ensure compliance with ESSA and that "California's new  
          multiple measure system of accountability needs to provide  
          greater emphasis on growth, equity and transparency in ways not  
          currently being considered."  In addition, supporters argue that  
          this bill will strengthen efforts to increase equity and  
          transparency and close achievement gaps.


          Arguments in opposition.  Opponents argue that this bill is  
          premature, because the SBE is still in the process of  
          identifying the key indicators and other metrics for  
          implementation of the evaluation rubrics.  Also, establishing  
          new statutory requirements at this time impedes the  
          collaborative process already underway to develop and implement  
          a new accountability system.


          REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION:




          Support



          Children Now (Co-Sponsor)


          Education Trust-West (Co-Sponsor)










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          A World Fit For Kids!


          Abriendo Puertas/Opening Doors


          Alliance for Boys and Men of Color


          Asian American Advancing Justice-California


          Asian & Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus


          Black Parallel School Board


          Bohbot & Riles, PC


          Brea Chamber of Commerce


          CA Charter Schools Association


          California Alliance of African American Educators


          California Chamber of Commerce


          California Charter Schools Association Advocates


          Cambridge Child Development Center










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          Center for Ecoliteracy


          Center For Leadership Equity and Research


          Child Abuse Prevention Council of Contra Costa


          Children's Defense Fund-California


          Congregations Building Community


          Desert Hot Springs Chamber of Commerce


          Dolores Huerta Foundation


          Educators 4 Excellence


          EdVoice


          Families in Schools


          Fight Crime: Invest in Kids - California


          First 5 Santa Clara County


          Foster Care Alumni of America, CA Chapter










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          Future Is Now


          Gatepath


          Greater Fresno Area Chamber of Commerce


          Green Dot Public Schools


          Half Moon Bay Brewing Company


          Harbour Consulting


          Honor Kids International, Peace Village Sanctuary


          Innovate Public Schools


          InsideOUT Writers


          Issokson and Associates


          Jumpstart California


          KIDS' OWN WISDOM


          LA Voice










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          Lutheran Office of Public Policy-California


          Making Change For Children


          Mission Readiness


          Mothers' Club Family Learning Center


          Multicultural Council of America


          National Center for Youth Law


          Our Family Coalition


          Parent Revolution


          Partnership for Children and Youth


          PICO California


          Public Counsel


          Raineth Housing


          ReadyNation










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          Sacramento Area Congregations Together


          Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce


          South Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce


          StudentsFirst


          Students Matter


          Teach For America


          Teach Plus


          The GreenHouse


          The L.A. Trust for Children's Health


          United Way of Greater Los Angeles


          Women's Empowerment


          Youth Policy and Programs Consultant




          








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          Opposition


          California Teachers Association




          Analysis Prepared by:Rick Pratt / ED. / (916) 319-2087