New York State has submitted its plan to improve its schools under the new ESSA law. ESSA requires that each state submit a plan for federal feedback and approval. The expectation is that the plan for New York will be approved in early 2018.
Monica Disare in Chalkbeat explains that “The plan is more than just a technical document — it’s also a manifesto spelling out a philosophy of school change that contrasts sharply with New York’s past approach” and notes that it includes a freeze on the use of certain test scores to rate teachers as well as making it easier for students with disabilities to graduate from high school.
According to Disare, the plan also focuses on evaluating and improving schools. She states that the new plan will evaluate schools based not only on test scores but also on other pieces of evidence such as student behavior and attendance, and adds that the proposal changes what happens after a school is rated as low performing.
The new ESSA plan will move from a punitive approach to one that offers the school more support, though she does note that a school that is poorly rated for three years in a row can still be taken over by the state.
One more key element of the plan includes a “data dashboard” which provides parents with information about how and why the school operates as it does. The plan proposes gathering a wealth of information on schools.
Amy Zimmer explains in dnainfo that “the state will also regularly publish data on school climate, teacher turnover rates, parent involvement, class size and per student funding.”
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