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Graduation and Completion Index and Virginia Early Warning System Tool Strengthening Connections April 20, 2010
Mary Whitley Accreditation Specialist Dr. Susan FitzPatrick Grants & Reports Manager Safe & Drug-Free Schools Graduation and Completion Index Office of School Improvement Virginia Department of Education
Silent Epidemic • Each year, almost ONE-THIRD of all public high school students—1.2 million—fail to graduate with their class. That’s one student every 26 seconds. • ABOUT HALF of African Americans, Hispanics and Native Americans in public schools fail to graduate. • There are nearly 2,000 HIGH SCHOOLS with less than 50 percent graduation rates concentrated in 50 large cities and in 15 primarily southern and southwestern states.
Virginia High School Cohort Rate Using longitudinal information from the Education Information Management System (EIMS), the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) was able to produce a cohort report for the Class of 2008.
Dropout Profile: VIRGINIA * • Dropouts from the Class of 2008 will cost Virginia almost $7.6 billion in lost wages over their lifetime. • About $6.5 billion would be added to Virginia’s economy by 2020 if students of color graduated at the same rate as white students. • The average high school dropout in Virginia produces a lifetime net fiscal “surplus” of $17,690 more in taxes than he/she would impose in transfer costs and institutionalization costs. • For Virginia high school graduates, the surplus is $368,870, a loss of $351,180 for each dropout.** *Visions to Practice Conference, July, 2009, Mary McNaught, Chief of Staff, Civic Enterprises **Council on Virginia’s Future, “The High Cost of Low Educational Attainment” August, 2008
Standards of Accreditation (SOA) In February, 2009, the Board of Education strengthened Virginia’s accountability program by: • Requiring high schools—beginning with the 2011-2012 school year—to meet an annual benchmark for graduation. • Revising Virginia’s accreditation standards to create a Graduation and Completion Index for high schools.
Standards of Accreditation (SOA) (continued) The Graduation and Completion Index awards: • 100 points for students who graduate with a • Advanced Studies Diploma • Standard Diploma • Modified Standard Diploma • Special Diploma or General Achievement Diploma • 75 points for students who earn a GED • 70 points for students still in school • 25 points for students who finish high school with a Certificate of Completion
Standards of Accreditation (SOA) (continued) Beginning with accreditation ratings announced in fall 2011, high schools must earn a minimum of 85 points on the graduation and completion index—as well as achieve the required pass rates on state tests in English, history/social science, mathematics and science—to be Fully Accredited. • High schools that do not attain the minimum graduation benchmark, but meet all other requirements, can be Provisionally Accredited until fall 2015 by achieving interim graduation benchmarks. • High schools that achieve the required pass rates on state assessments, but do not meet the provisional benchmarks for graduation and completion, will be rated as Accredited with Warning.
Standards of Accreditation (SOA) (continued) Index Points Accreditation Status In 2016-2017, all schools must have a Graduation and Completion Index of 85 and meet the standards in the four academic areas to be Fully Accredited. Any high school with index point totals less than 85 or below the standards in any of the academic areas will be Accredited with Warning.
Standards of Accreditation (SOA) (continued) • The Virginia on-time graduation rate for 2008-2009 may have resulted in the following accreditation ratings for our high schools: • Fully Accredited – 36 high schools • Provisionally Accredited – 45 high schools • Accredited with Warning – 50 high schools
How Will This Affect Accreditation for Virginia High Schools? • More high schools will be Accredited with Warning or Provisionally Accredited. • Academic reviews will need to be tailored to effectively evaluate the high school program in relation to the student at-risk indicators affecting the graduation rate. • There is a need for an at-risk tool to identify students most likely not to graduate. • A major focus will be to develop and support local capacity to analyze the causes of student dropout data and implement the necessary reforms to raise the graduation rate for all students.
Graduation and Completion Index and Virginia Early Warning System Tool Virginia’s On-Time Graduation Tool January 21, 2010 Coaches, Team Leaders, and Auditors Meeting Tool for Identifying At-Risk Students
What the Dropouts Told Us • Big dreams, ambition to graduate, do some college • 88% had passing grades, with 62% having C’s and above • 58% dropped out with just two years or less to complete high schoolcomplete high school • 66% would have worked harder if expectations were higher • 70% were confident they could have graduated • 81% recognized graduating was vital to their success
Early Warning System Tool • Early warning systems use routinely available data housed at the school that are good predictors of whether a student is likely to drop out of school. • Divisions and schools can use this information to: • Track the risk factors associated with dropout behaviors for individual students; • Implement tiered interventions that support off-track students while they are still in school – before they drop out; and • Look for patterns and identify school climate issues that may contribute to disproportionate dropout rates at a subset of high schools or within subpopulations of students.
Being absent more than 20% of the time Failing or low grades in English and mathematics Low Standards of Learning test scores in language arts/reading or mathematics Changing schools during the school year Repeating the current grade Two or more years over age for grade Multiple behavior referrals and suspensions Students Who Drop Out Have Similar Characteristics.
More dropouts Were Repeating Grades Source: Holian, L. (2009). Comparison of High School Dropouts to Non-dropouts in the 2007/08 School Year. Presented to the Virginia Department of Education May 14, 2009.
Students who drop out in Virginia have multiple risk factors. Risk factors analyzed for students enrolled in 2008 • Changing schools during the school year • Repeating the current grade • Being absent more than 20 percent of the time • Two or more years over age for grade Source: VDOE data analysis conducted with technical assistance from Laura Holian, Ph.D., REL Appalachia. 2009.
Early Warning System Tool and Guide • Virginia has developed a research-based Early Warning System (EWS) Tool in collaboration with the Appalachia Regional Comprehensive Center and the National High School Center which is being piloted in four school divisions. • Indicators addressing attendance, behavior, and academic performance identify students at risk of dropping out of high school.
Early Warning System Tool and Guide • Virginia’s Practitioners’ Guide to Analyzing Early Warning Systems Data Guide is designed for an audience of high school and division-level practitioners and will be used to enhance their capacity for analyzing the data from the Virginia tool. • The aim of the guide is to support school and division efforts to make informed decisions about students who fall off-track for graduation and to identify potential interventions to get these students back on-track for graduation.
Early Warning System Tool and Guide • This Virginia EWS tool also assists in assigning appropriate interventions to support the student and family in the successful completion of high school. • The interventions are assigned according to need and are tiered: • Tier I Universal (for all students); • Tier II Selected (for a more limited number of students); and, • Tier III Targeted (for those students most at-risk).
Alexandria City Public Schools (new in 2009) Franklin City Public Schools Richmond City Public Schools The Pilot Partners Lee County Public Schools Pulaski County Public Schools
What are the Indicators for incoming 9th Graders? • Standards of Learning (SOL) grade 8 reading scaled score • Proficiency level (state-approved alternative/alternate reading assessments only) • Failed state reading assessment for the last two years of data • English/language arts final grade for 2007-2008 • F or D in reading for the last two years • SOL grade 8 mathematics scaled score
What are the indicators for incoming 9th graders? (continued) • Proficiency level (state-approved alternative/alternate mathematics assessments only) • Failed state mathematics assessment for the last two years of data • Mathematics final grade 2007-2008 • F or D in mathematics for the last two years • Over age (as of 9/1/08) • Ninth-grade repeater • Number of days absent 2007-2008 • Number of in- or out-of-school suspensions 2007-2008
Other Technical Assistance • The Virginia EWS tool and guide will be available to all school divisions by fall 2010. • An online school improvement plan format for high schools will soon be available at the Center for Innovation and Improvement Web site using the Indistar system and The Eight Elements of High School Reform developed by the National High School Center. • A PowerPoint presentation is being developed for division superintendents to share with their school boards to encourage discussion about the policies that encourage students to remain in school.
Resources and Links • Grad Nation: A Guidebook to Help Communities Tackle the Dropout Crisis (America’s Promise Alliance, February 2009) http://www.every1graduates.org/PDFs/GradNation_Guidebook_Final.pdf • The Silent Epidemic: Perspectives of High School Dropouts http://www.civicenterprises.net/pdfs/thesilentepidemic3-06.pdf • Council on Virginia’s Future: The High Cost of Low EducationalAttainment http://www.future.virginia.gov/docs/IssueInsights/Insight1.pdf • Virginia Department of Education Statistics & Reports: Graduation, Completion & Dropout Data:http://www.doe.virginia.gov/statistics_reports/graduation_ completion/index.shtml
Resources and Links • Eight Elements of High School Improvement: A Mapping Framework; The National High School Center http://www.betterhighschools.org/docs/NHSCEightElements7-25-08.pdf 6. The Mid-Atlantic Equity Center at The George Washington University Center for Equity and Excellence in Education Web site: http://maec.ceee.gwu.edu E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mary B. WhitleyOffice of School ImprovementMary.Whitley@doe.virginia.govPhone: (804) 225-3122Cell: (804) 815-1162 Dr. Susan FitzPatrick Office of School ImprovementSusan.FitzPatrick @doe.virginia.gov Phone: (804) 225-2897 Contact Information