Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in School Accountability Systems

This interim report presents descriptive information on school-level accountability, adequate yearly progress (AYP), and school improvement status of schools accountable and schools not accountable for the performance of the students with disabilities (SWD) subgroup under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Based on U.S. Department of Education EDFacts data from the 2005–06 to 2008–09 school years for up to 40 states, key findings from the study include:

• Across the 40 states with relevant data, 35 percent of public schools were accountable for the performance of the SWD subgroup in the 2008–09 school year, representing 58 percent of tested SWDs in those states. In those same 40 states, 62 percent of middle schools were accountable for SWD performance, while 31 percent of elementary schools and 23 percent of high schools were accountable.

• In 20 states that had relevant data for all 4 years, there was a steady increase in the percent of SWD-accountable schools, from 25 percent in the 2005–06 school year to 34 percent in the 2008–09 school year.

• In 32 states with relevant data, 55 percent of public schools were not accountable for the SWD subgroup in any of the 4 years examined, while 18 percent were accountable in each of the 4 years.

• In 37 states with relevant data, 9 percent of all public schools missed AYP in the 2008–09 school year because of SWD subgroup performance and other reason(s), and 5 percent missed it solely because of SWD subgroup performance. Together, these schools served 28 percent of tested SWDs in all public schools in these states.

• Among schools that were consistently accountable for the performance of the SWD subgroup during the 4 years across 27 states with relevant data, 56 percent were not identified for school improvement over this time period. By comparison, among schools that were not accountable for SWD subgroup performance in any of the 4 years, 76 percent were never identified for improvement.