State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson, released today a new website designed to help communities across the state access important information about K-12 districts and schools. The California School Dashboard site, features easy to read reports on multiple measures of school success, including test scores in English Language Arts and Math, graduation rates, English Learner progress, and suspension rates.
Part of California’s new accountability system, the dashboards’ multiple indicators give a more complete picture of a school’s status and improvement over time. The new system focuses on success for every student and disaggregates results by student groups. Highlighting gaps among student groups will help parents, educators, and community members identify specific areas in need of resources and assistance, the ultimate goal of the new state system. The dashboards also support the Local Control Funding Formula, giving districts and schools more flexibility in meeting student needs through local decision making and continuous improvement processes.
In reviewing the county’s 10 district dashboards, the data presented coincide with results that district leaders have been monitoring over many years. Key findings include strong graduation rates at local high schools and low suspension rates within all grade spans. Students show higher achievement in English Language Arts than in Mathematics and our English Learners continue to struggle in acquiring academic English.
The Santa Cruz County Office has been meeting with district leaders over the past few months to assist them with navigating and communicating the data included in the dashboards. Support will continue to be provided to all districts and schools this first year with future plans to ensure specialized assistance where necessary.
The Santa Cruz County Office has created a short presentation to help our community understand how the Dashboard evaluates all districts and schools across the state.