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Remedial Reporting Steering Committee Calls for Common Method for Remedial Reporting

July 11, 2014 Comments off

Remedial Reporting Steering Committee Calls for Common Method for Remedial Reporting (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

The Education Commission of the States (ECS) today revealed a lack of consistency across the states on how remediation is measured and reported through their new report, A Cure for Remedial Reporting Chaos: Why the U.S. Needs a Standard Method for Measuring Preparedness the First Year of College . The report analyzed how states identify, track and report the number of students referred to remedial instruction in postsecondary school.

Thirty states were found to issue annual reports for all institutions and postsecondary systems that offer remediation, yet, only 13 states of these states provide feedback to high schools on their graduates’ needs for college remedial classes.

+ Full Report (PDF)

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States moving from accreditation to accountability

June 13, 2014 Comments off

States moving from accreditation to accountability (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

Accreditation policies vary widely among the states. Since ECS last reviewed public school accreditation policies in 1998, a number of states have seen their legislatures take a stronger role in accountability—resulting in a move from state-administered accreditation systems to outcomes-focused state accountability programs. Even in states maintaining accreditation programs, accreditation is often a component of the larger accountability system that evaluates school, district and state educational performance on a number of indicators.

See: State School Accountability “Report Card” Database

States Grapple With Autism’s Rising Tide

March 21, 2014 Comments off

States Grapple With Autism’s Rising Tide (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

Autism Spectrum Disorders are the fastest-growing developmental disability in the United States. In March 2013, the Centers for Disease Control estimated the prevalence of diagnosed ASD in 2011-12 to be one in 50 based on parent reports for children ages 6 to 17. Six years earlier, the CDC estimated the rate was one in 86.

In recognizing the increasing needs of children affected by ASD, as well as the associated financial implications for local governments, some states are re-assessing their current systems of support and looking for better and more efficient ways to serve individuals with ASD and their families.

As states have struggled to respond to the phenomenon, they have formed task forces, created pilot programs and launched resource and support services.

Career and Technical Education Dual Enrollment: A Strategy for College Completion and Workforce Investment

March 21, 2014 Comments off

Career and Technical Education Dual Enrollment: A Strategy for College Completion and Workforce Investment (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

Dual enrollment programs are expanding – and so are dual enrollment programs with a career and technical education (CTE) focus. The most recent data available from the National Center on Education Statistics show that 82 percent of high schools had students enrolling in dual enrollment coursework in 2010-11. Nearly half of the schools had students participating in dual enrollment with a CTE focus. That translates into roughly 601,500 students enrolled in CTE dual enrollment courses that year.

Who Pays the Tab for K-12 Education?

September 13, 2013 Comments off

Who Pays the Tab for K-12 Education?
Source: Education Commission of the States

Public education in the United States was originally established, run, and financed by local communities. While these local districts initially used several different methods to fund education—including student fees, contributions by community members, and various forms of local taxation—they eventually moved to funding education almost exclusively through local property taxes. This came to fruition because local property taxes are a predictable funding source and relatively easy to collect. In addition, property taxes are based on the value of the taxpayer’s property, which can be used as a proxy, albeit an imperfect one, for an individual’s wealth. The use of property taxes as the primary source of education funding has resulted in a system where students living in property-wealthy communities have received a significantly higher level of educational resources than students living in property-poor areas.

Not only can this situation be unfair to students, it can be and has proven to be unfair to taxpayers in many circumstances. Property owners who live in a property-poor community often face higher tax rates than those living in property-wealthy communities. This is due to the fact that property-poor districts require a higher tax rate to raise the same amount of funding as property-wealthy communities. For example, if the per capita property wealth in District A is $100,000, and in District B it is $300,000, District A would require a tax rate three times higher than District B to raise the same amount of funding.

Since the 1920s, states have become more and more involved in public education funding to address the issue of unequal funding from district to district. State involvement in education funding accelerated in the 1970s due to court decisions, the involvement of activists, and reform-oriented governors and state legislators, along with a relatively healthy economy. This sparked a series of reforms that resulted in major structural changes in the school finance systems of more than 30 states.

Competency-Based Education: Who’s Doing What

September 12, 2013 Comments off

Competency-Based Education: Who’s Doing What (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

Who is working to further the concept of competency-based education? This document is designed to direct policymakers to the various organizations who are doing so. Their resources could be useful in developing and implementing effective competency-based education policy.

End of Course Exams

April 4, 2012 Comments off

End of Course Exams (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

This report provides information on states that require students enrolled in courses that have an end-of-course (EOC) exam to take the EOC.

EOC by the numbers:

+ Statewide administration:

  • Twenty-two states currently administer one or more EOCs to all students in an EOC course.
    • This number will increase to 26 states over the next decade as EOCs are anticipated to be implemented in Alabama, Connecticut, Hawaii and Ohio.

+ EOC as exit exam:

  • Eight states currently require students to pass one or more EOC assessments to graduate from high school.
    • This number will likely increase to 15 states by 2020, with theanticipated implementation of EOCs as exit exams in Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Louisiana, Ohio, Texas and Washington.

+ EOC not exit exam:

  • Eleven states currently administer EOCs to all students in an EOC course, but do not require students to earn a passing score. These 11 states include California, New Jersey and South Carolina, which use another assessment as the state’s exit exam.

+ Final course grade:

  • At least five states — Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee — require that the score on the EOC be factored into a student’s final course grade. A sixth state, Texas, offers districts a deferral of a policy to incorporate EOC scores into students’ final course grades, but for the 2011-12 school year only.

Bullying and Open Enrollment

November 26, 2011 Comments off

Bullying and Open Enrollment
Source: Education Commission of the States

Some state anti-bullying policies require districts to adopt strategies to protect students who have been bullied from further victimization. A few states go one step further, adopting specialized interdistrict transfer policies to allow victims of bullying to enroll in another school district, or allowing for the transfer of bullies themselves. This report describes state policies to allow bullying victims, or bullies themselves, to transfer to another school or district.

A State Policymaker’s Guide to Expanding Learning Time

July 25, 2011 Comments off

A State Policymaker’s Guide to Expanding Learning Time (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

This brief describes recent state actions to amend the instructional year, and suggests actions for state policymakers. It includes proposed actions for maintaining or expanding learning time during difficult financial times. This guide was a joint project between the Education Commission of the States (ECS) and the National Center on Time & Learning (NCTL).

What Savings are Produced by Moving to a Four-Day School Week?

May 28, 2011 Comments off

What Savings are Produced by Moving to a Four-Day School Week? (PDF)
Source: Education Commission of the States

Because of the economic downturn more districts than ever are moving to a four-day school week, but the question still exists — what cost savings, if any, will this move produce? Making use of national and local spending data, this report shows what savings a district might realistically expect to realize when moving to a four-day week.

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