Presenting the California School Dashboard your new manual for understanding your childs training Los Angeles Times
“Parents of California, get ready for a change.
On Wednesday, the state will unveil the California School Dashboard, a new color-coded way to look at how your childu2019s school is doing and compare it with other schools.
The idea behind the website is simple: Parents need more information than theyu2019ve been getting.
Whether the dashboard provides the right information and whether it presents it clearly enough already are subjects of debate.
The last version of state school ratings was the Academic Performance Index. Each school was given a number based on test scores. Those numbers were so clear, they drove real estate decisions u2014 where to buy to be in a school district u2014 as well as real estate prices.
But API drew fierce criticism from teachers and advocates, who felt that the complex mix of factors that go into whether a school is considered good or bad could not be boiled down that way.
The state suspended API in 2014 when it began using new standardized tests aligned with the Common Core. Still, the old API Web page remains one of the California Department of Educationu2019s most-visited, a consultant told the State Board of Education this month. The board and its contractor, WestEd, have been trying to figure out APIu2019s replacement u2014 and soliciting comments about the possibilities u2014 for several years.
Some advocates and community groups wanted to include information about such things as school climate, a measure of how safe students feel in school; discipline rates, to hold schools accountable for suspending some students at higher rates than others; and attendance information, because chronic absenteeism is a telltale sign of a potential future dropout.”