School Accountability Under NCLB: Ambitious Goals and Competing Systems
California’s schools are held accountable under two, currently mismatched, accountability systems—state and federal. Each is evolving, with much debate and negotiation. Meanwhile, because the two systems use different metrics, a school can do well on one and not the other, creating much public confusion.
As state and federal officials work on proposals to unify the two systems, this report offers needed background, an update, and key long-term considerations. Specifically, it describes the proposal that the California Department of Education has developed to adapt its system to satisfy expectations under the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB); provides context for understanding that proposal by summarizing the similarities and differences between the state and federal systems; highlights key issues in California and elsewhere in the country; and describes likely next steps.
EdSource thanks The Noyce Foundation for underwriting the research and development of this publication.