March 30, 2015
Tallahassee, Fla. – Today, the Texas Senate passed the Public School Performance Ratings legislation (SB 6), sponsored by Senate Education Committee Chair Larry Taylor. The Public School Performance Ratings bill will enact A-F School Grading at the campus level, enabling parents and communities to access transparent information about schools. This legislation was recently unveiled as part of Lt. Governor Dan Patrick and Chair Larry Taylor’s first round of priority education proposals. Governor Greg Abbott also emphasized his commitment to A-F School Grading at the campus level in his recently proposed budget.
Excellence in Education National (@Excel_National) Executive Director Patricia Levesque said, “The purpose of a school accountability system is to increase student performance by providing clear and consumable information to parents, educators and the public about school effectiveness. We are thankful for Chair Taylor’s leadership in paving the way for this powerful tool that recognizes success and clearly identifies areas for improvement in a way that everyone can understand.
“We commend the Texas Senate for taking bold action to ensure transparency and accountability in the state’s public schools. We encourage the Texas House of Representatives to quickly approve this important legislation.”
- Changes the current campus rating label used by the state to an A-F rating starting with the 2017-2018 school year, making campus ratings more transparent for parents and communities.
- Notes that an A reflects exemplary performance, a B reflects recognized performance, a C reflects acceptable performance, and a D or F reflects unacceptable performance.
Background on A-F School Grades:
- A-F School Grading systems have been adopted in Florida and 15 other states.
- A-F grades promote transparency. Using clear and transparent A, B, C, D, and F descriptors ensures that there is a scale that parents, teachers, and administrators clearly understand. Unlike any other scale, A-F provides a system that is understandable and relevant.
- A-F grades distinguish, in an immediately understandable way, schools that are doing a good job of making sure students are learning, schools that are failing and schools that need to work harder to improve.
- A-F grades promote excellence. The command focus on learning allows administrators, educators and parents to focus on students. No one is satisfied with a “C” grade or even a “B” grade. Everyone strives for excellence in a way you don’t see with fuzzy descriptors like “satisfactory” or “performing.”
- A-F grades allow student growth toward high standards. Using criterion-based growth in a school grading system ensures students are measured on their individual progress towards meeting pre-determined expectations, or “standards.” A standard is set for the amount of growth a student must make to demonstrate at least a year’s worth of progress in a year’s time towards the mastery of a certain set of skills.