On December 30, 2016, Texas Education Agency (TEA) Commissioner Mike Morath released a “work-in-progress” report to the Texas Legislature, showing the A–F rating that each district and campus would have received for Domains I – IV in the 2015-16 school year if an A–F rating system had been in place.
Under the state’s current accountability system, Irving ISD’s rating is Met Standard, the state’s highest ranking. All 33 schools in Irving ISD that are rated also achieved the state’s highest rating of Met Standard. Those rankings were released in August 2016. TEA’s next official accountability ratings will follow the current accountability system rules, and will be released in August 2017, reflecting performance for the 2016-17 school year.
Irving ISD, like all public school districts in Texas, has received the Commissioner’s “what if” ratings report. As Commissioner Morath has made clear, the system is still a work in progress as the calculations used to determine the letter ratings are not fixed and will likely continue to change up until the official A-F ratings are released in August 2018, reflecting performance for the 2017-18 school year.
Because the TEA uses complex and varying methodologies to develop the point values needed to earn certain ratings, Irving ISD’s superintendent explains the work-in-progress ratings can’t be viewed like traditional letter grades that many parents are familiar with seeing. For example, most parents, students and teachers would believe point values (or scores) ranging from 90 to 100 would equal an A, and point values ranging from 80 to 89 would equal a B. What the work-in-progress report shows is that within one domain a point value of 60 would result in an A rating, while in other domains, a point value of 35, 9.6, or a 73 would result in an A. “I can see how this variation in point values could be hard to understand,” says Superintendent of Schools Jose L. Parra, Ed.D.
“We have no fear of accountability because we are always looking to improve as a district and we are focused on doing everything possible to maximize each student’s potential,” says Parra. “But I believe we need both accountability and an accountability system that is fair and logical in its methodologies. We need a system that accurately reflects student learning and growth.”
Irving ISD’s Board of Trustees may consider adopting a resolution that addresses its position on the new accountability system, which Morath has acknowledged is still a work-in-progress rating system that will undergo more changes prior to official use in August 2018.
The work-in-progress ratings released by the TEA today include letter ratings in four domains: Student Achievement, Student Progress, Closing the Gaps, and Postsecondary Readiness. Ratings for the fifth domain, Community and Student Engagement, as well as overall letter ratings, are expected to be announced in August 2018.
The Commissioner’s work-in-progress report shows Irving ISD would have received the following domain letter ratings, if the A-F rating system had been used:
The same work-in-progress domain ratings for individual schools, if the A-F rating system had been used, are as follows: