Dashboard changes take shape during State Board of Education meeting
CDE preparing for release of individual student-level growth data in 2024
illustration of a laptop with a measuring dial on green

During its March 8–9 meeting, the State Board of Education laid the groundwork for developing updates to the 2023 California School Dashboard, which will be finalized later this year.

The 2022 California School Dashboard, released in December following a two-year pause prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, highlighted chronic absenteeism as a particularly troubling indicator, with 30 percent of students marked as chronically absent in 2021–22.

Board leaders questioned the possibility of indicating on the Dashboard through disaggregated data whether students missed out on instructional time as a result of COVID precautions or other events outside of their control.

“We’re going to have to think about chronic absenteeism differently,” said Board President Linda Darling-Hammond. “I don’t think we can assume [this] will be a blip from the pandemic. I think we’re going to continue to see climate-related disasters and other things that confuse the question of … students not getting to school when they could and should versus not being able to be in school. I do think we’re going to have to continue to think about how to evaluate that indicator and maybe even reconsider the way in which we disaggregate or collect the data.”

The board provided guidance on the proposed 2023 accountability work plan and discussed changes for several indicators and topics ahead of the release of the 2023 Dashboard. Considerations included:

  • English Learner Progress Indicator (ELPI) — The California Department of Education will work to complete the ELPI by establishing both Change cut scores and a Performance Level color grid. The alternative English Learner Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC) will be incorporated into the ELPI.
  • Graduation Rate Indicator — The CDE is developing a multi-year graduation rate that extends beyond the current combined four- and five-year graduation rate to assist Dashboard Alternative Status Schools (DASS) in showing a more accurate picture of the progress of their students.
  • College/Career Indicator (CCI) — Now with two years of available data, the CDE will work with relevant interest groups to determine if four new career measures (Internships, Student-led enterprise, Simulated work-based learning and Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) meet the validity requirements for inclusion in the CCI and what the “prepared” and “approaching prepared” criteria should be for graduates. Staff is also working with partners to develop a new civic engagement measure for potential inclusion in the CCI, and soliciting feedback on another career measure (Industry certifications) to define and identify what data should be collected.
We’re going to have to think about chronic absenteeism differently. I don’t think we can assume [this] will be a blip from the pandemic.”
Linda Darling-Hammond, Board President
  • Priority 1: Local indicator update to align the Dashboard with additional data per California Education Code — The CDE will evaluate and provide recommendations to the board on the addition of data on least restrictive environment, reporting science assessment data, and establishing objective criteria for Priority 1 teacher assignment. Department staff noted that teacher assignment data represents only one of three components included within Priority 1.
  • Development of student-level growth model visualizations — The CDE will prepare for the release of the initial set of student growth data in 2024 by developing communication tools to assist the public, schools and families in interpreting and understanding the purpose of the data. The release will use California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) scores from the 2021–22, 2022–23 and 2023–24 school years for the initial set of individual student-level growth data.
  • Address data quality and participation issues uniformly on the Dashboard — The department is exploring the alignment of implications for LEAs who fail to certify data in the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) or, following submission, report to the CDE that the data is incorrect. The CDE will also review the current participation rate penalty for the ELPAC and provide suggestions for alignment to the participation rate for English Language Arts and Mathematics indicators.
School Climate Indicator

At its January meeting, the board provided feedback to improve the current local indicator self-reflection tool for Priority 6 of the Local Control Funding Formula: School Climate. LEAs use the self-reflection tools included within the Dashboard to report their progress on the local performance indicator. The current self-reflection tool requires LEAs to provide a narrative summary of the local administration and analysis of a local climate survey, which is to be conducted at least every other year, that captures a valid measure of student perceptions of school safety and connectedness in at least one grade within the grade span (e.g., K–5, 6–8, 9–12).

Proposed edits adopted by the board March 9 include an introductory section that describes the importance of school climate, research in support of positive school climate and the need to use current data to inform comprehensive planning, as well as instructions to provide LEAs with clarified guidance to address the narrative portion. The proposed tool divides the narrative into three separate prompts that require LEAs to describe the local data including data disaggregated by student group, key learnings including identified needs and areas of strength, and changes needed to address local needs.

The next State Board meeting is scheduled for May 18–19, 2023.