June 1, 2015
RELEASE: Texas School Grading Bill Falls Short of Focusing on Student Learning Outcomes
More work needed on the formula to ensure improved student achievement and empower parents
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Yesterday, the Texas Legislature gave final approval to A-F School Grading legislation (HB 2804), sponsored by Senate Education Committee Chair Larry Taylor and House Public Education Chair Jimmie Don Aycock. HB 2804 would require Texas to report A-F grades at the campus-level, beginning in the 2017-2018 school year.
“We appreciate the commitment of Lt. Governor Dan Patrick and Senator Taylor for their efforts to ensure that the Texas Legislature embraces the concept of A-F School Grading,” Excellence in Education National (@Excel_National) Executive Director Patricia Levesque said. “However, the Texas House’s revisions to the bill fall short by including measures that are not directly focused on improving student learning outcomes. We urge Texas policymakers to continue working toward an A-F School Grading formula that is entirely based on students’ learning outcomes and comparable from school to school.”
According to HB 2804, school grades will represent student learning, learning gains, closing achievement gaps, and a multitude of college and career readiness measures, in combination with input-driven measures such as student attendance, three locally selected and self-graded programs that will vary across schools, along with yet to be defined measures as determined by the Commissioner of Education. Successful A-F School Grading formulas do not include these input-driven measures because they do not indicate students’ readiness for college or career. Additionally, the locally selected programs will reduce the ability of parents, school leaders and policymakers to compare school performance across the state.