Making the Grade: A 50-State Analysis of School Accountability Systems

This publication includes: an historical overview of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act; a review of the requirements of the 2015 Every Student Succeeds Act; a summary of the difference types of accountability systems used by states; and specific information about different state accountability systems. The authors conclude with a number of recommendations for states as they further develop and implement their accountability systems between now and 2017. 

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Content Comments 

The purposes of this publication are well described and met, if not exceeded. The authors have written a comprehensive and detailed publication providing an important snapshot of state accountability systems, using solid methodology and analyses. A key takeaway is the complexity and disparity in measures used by states to report student and school progress. 

Communications quality is exceptional, especially given the complexity of communicating 50 different state accountability systems. The state maps are very useful. 

The authors recommendations are solid. They approach and communicate their findings in a fair, equitable manner. Utility should be very high, especially for states interested in what other states are doing in the design of their accountability systems. 

While this report will become dated as states further develop their systems, it provides an excellent snapshot in time. Hopefully, the Center for American Progress will update this publication on an annual basis.