The Race for New Accountability Systems

Under ESSA states can design their own accountability systems. But while the general consensus is that Annual Yearly Progress, which was prescribed under NCLB, isn’t working, there’s no agreement yet on what an effective and fair method would be. The Fordham Institute recently held a competition to gather some fresh looks at accountability designs. 

Entrants tackled areas like indicators of academic achievement, measures of student growth, English language learner growth, and school quality. Overall, almost every entrant proposed ideas that go beyond tracking just math and reading scores, including 

“Most of today’s K–12 accountability systems are, themselves, persistently underperforming,” writes Andy Smarick, Bernard Lee Schwartz Senior Policy Fellow at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, ”One of the big problems is that they lean so heavily on student scores from reading and math tests. Even if the system uses growth measures in addition to proficiency, those growth scores are also typically based on reading and math tests.”

Read articles from Fordham about the Accountability Design Competition.

At the AAP PreK-12 Learning Group’s 2016 Content in Context conference, we will be looking at what’s next for education reform after ESSA.

Assessment and Accountability
Education Policy