Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Watch that 95% participation on testing

While ESSA loosens federal oversight of state assessment, it does continue the 95% participation requirement. A letter went out from U.S. DoE on December 22 to state school superintendents, reminding them that they still needed a plan to deal with schools and districts that fell below the 95%.
If a State with participation rates below 95% in the 2014−2015 school year fails to assess at least 95% of its students on the statewide assessment in the 2015−2016 school year, ED will take one or more of the following actions: (1) withhold Title I, Part A State administrative funds; (2) place the State’s Title I, Part A grant on high-risk status and direct the State to use a portion of its Title I State administrative funds to address low participation rates; or (3) withhold or redirect Title VI State assessment funds.
Just how states are dealing with this in some cases remains to be seen, but Connecticut turned around with their response already. They'll be dropping districts an accountability level and withhold funds for high non-participation rates.

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