Background - Achieve | Achieve

EMBARGOED Not For Release Before Thursday, January 29, 2015 Briefing for States January 28, 2015 Background This is the ninth year that Achieve has surveyed all 50 states and reported on state progress in adopting college- and career-ready standards, graduation requirements, assessments, and accountability and data systems. The report includes state-by-state results on the policies and practices of fortynine states and the District of Columbia that participated in this years survey. This years report includes information on policy adoption and implementation as well as recommendations for states as they transition to new courses, assessments, and accountability and public reporting systems that reflect their college- and career-ready standards.

Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 2 The College- and Career-Ready Agenda #1 - Align high school standards with the demands of college and careers. #2 - Require students to take a college- and career-ready course of study to earn a high school diploma. #3 - Develop statewide high school assessment systems anchored to college- and career-ready expectations. #4 - Develop reporting and accountability systems that promote college and career readiness.

Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 3 #1 - College- and Career-Ready Standards In the survey, Achieve asked states whether they have developed and adopted high school academic content standards in English and mathematics aligned to college- and career-ready expectations. Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 4 CCR Standards Are Not Self-Executing

Expecting all students to complete a course of study aligned to the full set of CCR expectations is one of the most important ways states can help ensure that graduates will be academically prepared for their next steps. There are many different ways to pull the standards together to create engaging, aligned and rigorous courses for students. Fewer than half 23 states and the District of Columbia expect all students to take math and ELA/literacy courses that deliver all content standards (whether for all students or as a default curriculum). Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 5 #2 - College- and Career-Ready Graduation Requirements In the survey, Achieve asked states whether they expect all

students to complete a college- and career-ready course of study in order to earn a high school diploma. Achieve also asked states how and whether they monitor and report on the implementation and effectiveness of its graduation requirement policies. Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 6 Establishing CCR Graduation Requirements Achieve considers states mathematics and ELA/literacy high school graduation requirements to be at the CCR level if students are expected to complete a course of study aligned with state-adopted CCR standards. States have structured their CCR graduation requirements in one of two ways: In states with Mandatory Requirements, students earn a HS diploma only if they complete the required courses.

In states with Default Requirements, students are automatically enrolled in the CCR curriculum in 9th grade but allowed to opt out if their parents sign a waiver. States establish a default approach in one of two ways, either with a minimum diploma or a personal modification opt-out. Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 7 As of 2014, 23 States and DC Have Adopted Policies that Require Students to Default Into a CCR Course of Study Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 8

Monitoring and Reporting on the Effectiveness of Graduation Requirements Policies through Coursetaking Analyses Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 9 Analyzing Course-taking Patterns Can Answer Key Questions How many students in each 9th grade cohort have completed a CCR course of study when they graduate? Are there significant gaps in successful participation in and completion of CCR courses of study based on race, ethnicity, gender, family income, English language learner status and special education status? Are the gaps closing? Are the students who have completed CCR courses of study better prepared to enter and succeed in credit-bearing courses in postsecondary institutions and the military? Are they

less likely to need remediation? Are there significant differences in the impact and benefits of CCR courses of study across demographic groups? In states where students can opt out of, modify or opt into the core CCR course of study, what course and course sequences do students who do not complete the CCR course of study take instead? Are they enrolled in coherent courses of study that align with postsecondary pathways and/or technical training programs leading to career opportunities? Are there pathways and courses of study that disproportionately leave students poorly prepared for postsecondary success and with less successful postsecondary outcomes? Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 10 States That Report How Many Graduates Complete a CCR Course of Study

States with opt-in or default CCR requirements States with mandatory CCR requirements with cohorts graduating against requirements Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 11 #3 - High School Assessments Anchored to College- and Career-Ready Expectations In the survey, Achieve asked states whether they administer to all students an assessment of college- and career-ready knowledge and skills capable of producing a readiness score used by postsecondary institutions and employers. Achieve also asked states about their efforts to link high school

assessments CCR determinations to postsecondary placement decisions. Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 12 In 2014, 36 States Will Administer Tests Aligned with CCR Expectations Twenty-eight states and the District of Columbia, are administering PARCC or Smarter Balanced in grades 3-8 or grades 3-8 and high school. These assessments have been explicitly designed to align with the CCSS. Thirty-six states are administering an assessment in high school capable of generating a score that reflects students readiness for first-year credit bearing courses in ELA and mathematics. Twenty-two states are administering a CCR assessment aligned with state standards that can generate a score that can be used by postsecondary for placement into firstyear credit-bearing courses in math and/or ELA/literacy. In nearly all cases these states

are members of the PARCC or Smarter Balanced consortia. Seventeen states will administer a college admissions test such as the ACT or SAT to all students in addition to the other statewide assessments. Three of these states will also administer PARCC or Smarter Balanced. Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 13 Postsecondary Use of CCR Assessments 7 states have a process/plan/timetable to adopt a policy linking high school assessments CCR determinations to postsecondary placement

decisions. 20 states have a plan to create such a policy. 23 states do not yet have a process/plan/timetable Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 14 Aligning Standards, Courses/Content Expectations, and Assessments Only a handful of states will both require all students to take courses/content that deliver the CCR standards/CCSS and assess students on that content. The rest of states fall short in one of four ways: 1.

State requires all students to have the underlying CCR coursework but does not administer assessments tied to these courses. 2. State assesses all students on advanced content (e.g., using the Algebra II/Integrated Math III EOC exam or Smarter Balanced 11th grade math comprehensive assessment) without requiring them to have the underlying coursework. 3. State administers EOC exam in Algebra II/Integrated Math III or English 11. However, the state does not require all students to take this assessment (i.e., state doesnt require the course of all students or districts have the option to administer). 4.

State neither requires all students to have the underlying advanced coursework through nor administers the assessment that ties to it (e.g., the highest level math end-of-course exam delivered to all students is Geometry or Algebra I). Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 15 What Assessments are States Administering in 2014-15? Despite all states having adopted CCR standards for all students, state math and ELA expectations (as expressed through assessment and course requirements) for all students are very different. Achieve asked states to report all of the assessments they would administer in math, ELA/literacy and science in grades 38 and high school (see www.achieve.org/ClosingtheExpectionsGap2014 for state-specific information).

Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 16 #4 - Reporting & Accountability Systems that Promote College and Career Readiness In the survey, Achieve asked states whether they have incorporated a set of college- and career-ready indicators into their data, reporting and accountability systems. Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 17 Key College- and Career-Ready Accountability Indicators and Uses

INDICATORS the the percentage percentage of of students students who... who... USES Earn Earn aa collegecollege- and and career-ready diploma

career-ready diploma Annual Annual school-level school-level public public reporting reporting Score college-ready on high school assessments Set statewide performance goals Earn college credit while in high school

Provide school-level incentives to improve Are required to take remedial courses in college Factor into accountability formula Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 18 Six States Publicly Report and Include in Accountability System at least two CCR Indicators

37 states and the DC publicly report or include in their school accountability formulas at least one CCR indicator three more states than last year. Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 19 Use of College- and Career-Ready Indicators over Time Nearly all indicators/uses saw growth

Largest gains in the CCR assessment indicator: Public reporting (+5 states) and including the CCR assessment in the states accountability formula (+7 states) Achieve found that over half of the states publicly report or include at least one career-focused indicator in their accountability systems. Two states HI and TX publicly report school-level data on each of the four indicators. Six additional states DE, IN, KY, MA, NC, and OH now report school-level data for three of the indicators Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap

20 www.achieve.org/ClosingtheExpectationsGap2014 Marie OHara ([email protected]) (202) 419-1562 Jenny Taylor ([email protected]) (202) 419-1547 Achieve | 2014 Closing the Expectations Gap 21

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