Office of Accountability

OA E-Blast Update

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Archived E-Blast Updates

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August 2015

...a monthly update on the New York State Education Department’s Office of Accountability (OA) activities relevant to school districts, schools, the education community and other stakeholders.

REGENTS ACTIONS

REGENTS UPDATES

GENERAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

REMINDERS

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REGENTS ACTIONS

Amendment of §100.18 of Commissioner’s Regulations Pertaining to School and District Accountability and New York State’s Approved ESEA Flexibility Renewal Waiver

At its July 2015 meeting, the Board of Regents approved, as an emergency action, the proposed revisions to §100.18 of the Regulations of the Commissioner in order to conform §100.18 to the State’s approved Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) Renewal Waiver and align §100.18 with § 100.19 of the Commissioner’s Regulations related to Receivership.

Based on staff recommendations, the Board Regents approved the following amendments to §100.18:

  • Revision of the Grades 3-8 Performance Index.
  • Allow districts to use one of the three new 1003(g) School Improvement Grant (SIG) intervention models.
  • Modest revisions to the methodologies used to identify and remove schools from Priority School, Focus School and Local Assistance Plan (LAP) status.
  • Extend through the 2018-19 school year the provision that allows districts to forego testing students on the Grades 7 and 8 Mathematics assessments, if these students have taken a Regents examination in mathematics.
  • Add a provision that if an accountability group has fewer than 30 valid test scores in the current school year and has failed to meet the 95% participation rate requirement, the Department will combine current year and prior year assessment results for accountability determinations.
  • Require more rigorous interventions and supports for Re-identified Focus Schools.
  • Revise the Schools under Registration Review (SURR) process to align to the receivership requirements pertaining to Persistently Struggling and Struggling Schools, including provisions pertaining to parent and public notification.
  • Require that any school identified as a SURR automatically also be identified as a Priority School.
  • Revise the conditions for which a school could be identified as a poor learning environment and therefore be identified as a SURR by the Commissioner.

The emergency rule, which became effective on July 21, 2015, will remain in effect for 90 days and be presented for permanent adoption at the October 15, 2015 Board of Regents meeting.

The July 2015 Regents Item regarding the proposed revisions to §100.18 can be found at:

http://www.regents.nysed.gov/common/regents/files/meetings/Jul%202015/713p12a2.pdf

The July 2015 presentation entitled “Amendment of §100.18 of Commissioner’s Regulations,” can be found at: http://www.regents.nysed.gov/common/regents/files/meetings//ESEAWaiver.pdf

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REGENTS UPDATES

New York State Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students Guidance Document

At the July 2015 Board of Regents meeting, Department staff provided an update on modifications pertaining to the proposed New York State Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students Guidance Document.  Also discussed were recommendations received from the Dignity for All Students Act Task Force.  

The task force will support the Department’s commitment to providing all public school students, including transgender and gender nonconforming students, with an environment free from discrimination and harassment; fostering civility in public schools; and ensuring that every student has equal access to educational programs and activities.

The July 2015 Regents Item regarding the New York State Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students Guidance Document can be found at: http://www.regents.nysed.gov/common/regents/files/meetings/Jul%202015/715p12d1.pdf

The July 2015 presentation regarding the New York State Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students Guidance Document can be found at: http://www.regents.nysed.gov/common/regents/files/meetings/TransgenderGuidance_0.pdf.

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Update on East Ramapo Central School District

At its July 2015 meeting, the Board of Regents (BOR) was provided with an update pertaining to the East Ramapo School District.  The update was based on a report issued by Henry M. Greenberg (former Counsel to the New York State Attorney General) and monitoring conducted by the New York State Education Department (NYSED).  The update included six recommendations as well as actions that will be taken by NYSED to assist the district.

The recommendations were based on the State’s finding that the District had engaged in a pattern or practice of placing students with disabilities in private day schools when appropriate placements were available in public settings.  In addition, the State notified the District that its data showed significant disproportionality by race/ethnicity in the incidence, duration and/or length of disciplinary actions, including suspensions and expulsions of students with disabilities.

The July 2015 Regents Item providing an update on East Ramapo Central School District can be found at: http://www.regents.nysed.gov/common/regents/files/meetings/Jul%202015/713p12d2.pdf

The July 2015 presentation entitled “Update on East Ramapo Central School District” can be found at:

http://www.regents.nysed.gov/common/regents/files/meetings//EastRamapoUpdate.pdf

Subsequent to the July 2015 Board of Regents meeting, Commissioner Elia announced that Dennis M. Walcott has been appointed as Monitor for the East Ramapo Central School District.  Walcott, the former Chancellor of The New York City Department of Education, will oversee an expert team that will monitor district operations and provide recommendations to ensure that students have access to appropriate programs and services, and that the district is on a path to fiscal and programmatic stability. 

The press release announcing the appointment can be found at: http://www.nysed.gov/news/2015/commissioner-elia-appoints-dennis-m-walcott-monitor-east-ramapo-central-school-district.

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GENERAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

State Education Department Releases Spring 2015 Grades 3-8 Assessment Results

On August 12, 2015, the State Education Department released the results of the 2015 Grades 3-8 English Language Arts (ELA) and Math tests.

Overall, students statewide have made incremental progress in ELA and math since 2013, the first year assessments aligned to the more rigorous learning standards were administered in grades 3-8.

Based on the results the following was determined:

  • In ELA, the percentage of all test takers in grades 3-8 who scored at the proficient level (Levels 3 and 4) remained consistent in 2015 at 31.3 compared to 30.6 in 2014 and 31.1 in 2013.
  • In math, the percentage of all test takers in grades 3-8 who scored at the proficient level (Levels 3 and 4) increased by seven points in two years to 38.1 in 2015 from 36.2 in 2014 and 31.1 in 2013.

The statewide proficiency rates on the 2015 Grades 3-8 ELA and math tests closely match the proficiency rates of New York State students on the 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).

To access the press release pertaining to spring 2015 grades 3-8 assessment results please visit: http://www.nysed.gov/news/2015/state-education-department-releases-spring-2015-grades-3-8-assessment-results.

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Postponement of Inclusion of Grade 8 Algebra I Regents Exam Results in State-provided Growth Scores

A July 20, 2015 memo from Assistant Commissioners Ira Schwartz and Julia Rafal-Baer informed the field that NYSED will not be expanding the State-provided growth model to include results for eighth grade students who take the Regents Examination in Algebra I (Common Core).

The Board of Regents has directed NYSED to create and convene an Evaluation Workgroup during the 2015-16 school year, which will consider and make recommendations for potential modifications to the State-provided growth model.  NYSED has therefore postponed any expansion of the current model until the workgroup completes its work and presents the Board of Regents with its recommendations.

Additional details can be found in the field memo at: http://www.p12.nysed.gov/accountability/documents/Gr8AlgMemo_draft_updateddecisions_final.pdf.

Related questions should be addressed to educatoreval@nysed.gov, with the subject line “Grade 8 Algebra student growth.”

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Release of 2014-15 State-Provided Growth Data Files

On or about Friday, August 21, 2015 the Department expects that State-provided growth data files for use in the APPR for teachers and principals of grades 4-8 ELA and math will be made available, and data for use in the APPR for principals of grades 9-12 and principals of grades 4-12 will be available on or about August 27, 2015.  Data files will be released to districts via the Information and Reporting Services Portal at http://portal.nysed.gov.

Districts will need to incorporate the Growth Score (0-20 points) and the equivalent rating (HEDI) into the APPR as required by Education Law §3012-c and Subpart 30-2 of the Rules of the Board of Regents for each applicable educator. Districts must complete the evaluations and provide final composite ratings to all educators by September 1, 2015.

For further information on APPR data collection and reporting timelines for the 2014-15 school year, please see Assistant Commissioner Julia Rafal-Baer’s July 2015 memo available at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/memos/tle/appr-deadline-and-timeline.pdf.

In addition, on Friday, August 21, 2015, all data files containing 2013-14 State-provided growth results will be removed from the IRS Portal in order to prepare for 2014-15 State-provided growth data files to be posted.  Districts that have not yet done so should download their 2013-14 data files prior to Friday August 21, 2015.  State-Provided Growth Data Files can be accessed on the IRS Portal at: http://portal.nysed.gov/portal/page/portal/PortalApp.

Related questions should be addressed to educatoreval@nysed.gov.

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New York State School Receivership Conference July 22 and 23, 2015

On Wednesday, July 22, 2015 and Thursday, July 23, 2015, the Department held a Receivership Conference in Albany, NY for districts with identified Struggling Schools and Persistently Struggling and for Key Stakeholders and organizations supporting schools and districts.  The purpose of the conference was to provide guidance to the field on how to implement the Receivership program as outlined in Section100.19 of the Commissioner’s Regulations.

Meeting materials, presentations and resources distributed at the July 22 – 23, 2015 School Receivership Conference, can be found at: http://www.p12.nysed.gov/accountability/de/SchoolReceivership.html

Any questions regarding School Receivership should be sent to receivership@nysed.gov

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REMINDERS

Public Hearing and Notification for Struggling Schools and Persistently Struggling Schools

Struggling Schools and Persistently Struggling School notifications to parents and public hearings must take place no later than 20 days after the district is notified that schools have been identified.

The deadline for the request an extension of the timeline for holding public hearings for any Persistently Struggling and/or Struggling Schools was Thursday, August 6, 2015.

For more information please write to: receivership@nysed.gov.   

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2015- 16 Consolidated Applications

Consolidated applications are due to the Department on Monday, August 31, 2015. For more information please write to CONAPPTA@nysed.gov.

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Out of Time Plans

Districts were required to submit a 2015-16 Enhanced School Comprehensive Education Plan (SCEP) for identified Out of Time Schools, no later than Friday, July 31, 2015.  The Enhanced SCEP must include:

  • If the school is a high school - a description of how the district will ensure that students at the school have access to CTE programs at schools in Good Standing and/or local Boards of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES);
  • A description of the mandatory professional development for leadership and staff; and,
  • A description of the plan to offer extended learning time.

For more information about "Out of Time Schools" please write to: accountinfo@nysed.gov.

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2015 - 16 Local Assistance PlanLocal Assistance Plans are due to the Department on Friday, November 20, 2015. For more information please write to: accountinfo@nysed.gov.

NEXT PUBLICATION

SEPTEMBER 2015

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Last Updated: December 9, 2015