- The strength of Alaska’s plan is rooted in the acknowledgement that the state faces some of the most difficult demographic, geographic, and infrastructural challenges in the nation, yet it lays out a detailed plan to address those issues.
- Alaska has a good balance of rigor and attainability in its long-term goals and measures of interim progress.
- Alaska’s goal of cutting the achievement gap in half within 10 years provides a strong starting point for growth.
- In addition to being simple, unique, and evidence-based, the state’s list of indicators places a strong focus on growth and achievement along with measuring college and career readiness.
- Alaska’s 100-point system for grading schools is straightforward, as are the labels for each rating: superior, satisfactory, needs improvement, targeted support, or comprehensive support.
- These school ratings incorporate subgroup performance across accountability indicators, and the chosen indicators emphasize both growth and achievement and keep the focus on academic progress. This grading system will help parents and other stakeholders understand all schools’ performance.
- The state must overcome a recent history of instability with standards and assessments to create a foundation for future success.
- Alaska’s school performance index lays out several good ideas, but the plan does not include historical data to show how rigorous it will be in differentiating schools.
- The plan’s greatest weakness rests in its lack of rigor in identifying schools for support and the corresponding exit criteria. It’s difficult to determine whether the state’s methodology will result in identifying schools with students most in need.