TEA: State Accountability, Testing Waived For All Districts, Campuses

All Schools To Receive “Not Rated: Declared State of Disaster” For State Academic Accountability

For those worried what the mandatory school closures due to COVID-19 will mean as far as state academic testing and ratings and for their schools, don’t. For 2020 state academic accountability, all districts and campuses will receive a label of “Not Rated: Declared State of Disaster,” according to Texas Education Agency.

TEA this week received approval from the U.S. Department of Education to waive statewide assessment and accountability requirements under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act, for the 2019–2020 school year. School administrators should be receiving letters from TEA notifying them about this very soon, if they have not already received one.

Most state and federal funding and other opportunities schools received are tied to school ratings which are impacted by students’ scores on state tests and other indicators. After Governor Greg Abbot ordered schools closed through May, and suspended the annual academic assessment requirements, the question of what that would mean for schools arose.

TEA on March 24 requested a federal assessment and accountability waiver from USDE; the waiver was granted on March 30. TEA will issue “labels indicating Not Rated: Declared State of Disaster for 2020 to recognize that the closure of schools during the state’s testing window inhibited the ability of the state to accurately measure district and campus performance.”

Campuses identified for comprehensive support and improvement, targeted support and improvement, and additional targeted support in 2019 will maintain that label and interventions for 2020–2021.

Districts or campuses that received D or F ratings in 2019 will “continue to implement the previously ordered sanctions and interventions.”

“If a campus has been ordered to prepare a turnaround plan and then receives a rating of Not Rated: Declared State of Disaster, that campus is strongly encouraged, but not required, to implement the approved turnaround plan,” TEA reports.

Overall ratings or domain ratings of or F in both 2019 and in 2021 by a campus or district “will be considered to be consecutive for the determination of multiple-year unacceptable status.”

TEA Accountability FAQ related to COVID-19

Author: Faith Huffman

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