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LCFF Priority 4 Statement of Model Practices

Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) Priority 4 Statements of Model Practices are intended to support LEAs and their stakeholders in the Local Control and Accountability Plan development process.

Desired Results: Educators, in consultation with students and families, examine data on student performance to improve academic achievement, increase college/career readiness, and support English learners and students with disabilities. Through communities of practice, teachers use student performance data to support a relevant and engaging curriculum for all students including those who have traditionally faced barriers to successful transitions to high school, postsecondary, and Career Technical Education. Courses support all students for success during and after high school by preparing them to pursue a full range of postsecondary opportunities.

Implementation of standards based academic curricula includes a comprehensive assessment plan that includes interim, summative, and formative assessment practices. Various means of assessing student achievement include:

  • Teacher-created assessments,
  • LEA or school assessments,
  • Evidence from student work (papers, portfolios, projects, presentations), and
  • California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System including Smarter Balanced Summative and Interim Assessments.

Model Practices

Performance on CAASPP and other Assessments

Different kinds of assessment serve different purposes. Educators use formative assessment practices to plan instruction and additional support for students based on real-time evidence of student achievement. Summative assessments are aligned with standards and measure student learning and progress toward a specific set of criteria. Interim assessments, sometimes referred to as benchmark assessments, may serve both formative and summative functions. Interim assessments are used to predict future performance on summative assessments while also providing information that informs instruction that is intended to improve future performance on summative assessments. Assessments should be designed for the purpose(s) they are intended to serve.

Model Practices: Some example model practices in this area may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Use formative, interim, and summative assessment data to establish instructional priorities, inform classroom instruction, and appropriately place and exit students from intervention and support programs.
  • Teachers actively engage students in monitoring their own progress toward established learning goals.
  • Teachers increase their capacity – through professional learning opportunities in collaboration with other teachers – to conduct informal, in-class assessments in order to gauge student understanding and achievement, inform instruction, and provide real-time feedback to students.
  • Provide students multiple opportunities to revise work and, as appropriate, retake assessments to obtain accurate measures of their achievement.
  • Use interim and summative assessment results to monitor overall improvements and general areas of need.
  • LEAs, teachers, and administrators meet one or more times a year to review and discuss the effectiveness of the current inventory of student assessments used as diagnostic, instructional, and accountability tools.

English Learners

  1. English Learner Reclassification
    English learner (EL) students that (1) demonstrate English language proficiency as measured by an objective assessment, (2) demonstrate mastery of basic skills comparable to that of a native speaker in the same grade level, and (3) have recouped any academic deficits are considered for reclassification. Local reclassification policies and procedures are based on the following four criteria:
    • Assessment of English language proficiency (ELP), using an objective assessment instrument, including, but not limited to, the state test of English language development;
    • Teacher evaluation, including, but not limited to, a review of the student’s curriculum mastery;
    • Parent opinion and consultation;
    • Comparison of student performance in basic skills against an empirically established range of performance in basic skills based on the performance of English proficient students of the same age.

Model Practices: Some example model practices in this area may include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • All LEAs, including those who do not accept Title III funds, provide state and federally mandated English Language Development (ELD) instruction appropriate to the English proficiency level of each English learner (i.e. Dual-Language Immersion, Transitional Bilingual, Developmental Bilingual, Structured English Immersion, etc.) above and beyond core English Language Arts (ELA) instruction. The ELD instruction provided should be research based and evaluated regularly to ensure student achievement of English proficiency as well as academic mastery of subject matter content and higher order skills. These activities include, but are not limited to:
      • Providing designated ELD, at protected times in the day, that is not isolated from content areas but mapped to align directly with major units of relevant content instruction to develop critical English language skills, knowledge, and abilities needed for content learning in English;
      • Providing ELD that is integrated into content-related areas to ensure access to core curriculum;
      • Reviewing instructional methods and strategies used for ELs, state and local assessment results of ELs, and other data specific to ELs on a regular basis, using data analysis to inform instruction.
    • Use the English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC) to annually monitor English language proficiency and determine strategic class scheduling.
    • Identify local and state assessments and cut scores to monitor the progress of English learners toward meeting multiple measures that indicate they are ready to reclassify.
    • Monitor all reclassified students for at least four years to ensure that they were not prematurely exited, have remedied any academic deficits, and continue to demonstrate the attained proficiency on statewide assessments for each of the four years after reclassification.
    • Make certain that English learners, their families, and teachers are informed of the reclassification criteria and progress made towards reclassification.
  1. Long Term English Learners
    Long Term English Learners (LTELs) are students who have been enrolled in U.S. schools for six years or more, are stalled in progressing towards English proficiency without having yet reached a threshold of adequate English skills, and are struggling academically.6 Programs and interventions that develop English rapidly, effectively, and efficiently can help prevent English Learners from becoming LTELs.

Model Practices: Some example model practices in this area may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Design specialized courses for the specific language and academic needs of LTELs at all levels of English proficiency that will help students reclassify and recoup academic deficits while simultaneously placing them in rigorous grade level content classes that use differentiated instructional strategies to highlight explicit academic language. This includes providing equitable opportunity to advanced coursework (including A-G and Advanced Placement courses) to all EL and immigrant students.
  • Employ systems for monitoring progress and differentiating support for LTELs to accelerate learning, including routine formative progress checks to identify areas of need for successful course completion.
  • Provide professional development and coaching to ELD and content teachers on strategies that emphasize complex reading, writing, academic vocabulary, active engagement, and oral language to address LTEL needs and infuse academic literacy in all courses.
  • Provide intervention options to students who are at risk of becoming LTELs in grades 3 and 4 specifically, but in all grades as necessary. Interventions should address language and literacy development and existing academic gaps. Specifically, intervention options may include teaching recognition and analysis of academic vocabulary, sentence structures, discourse structures, and text structures and involve active use of academic language in oral and written expression.

College and Career Readiness

  1. College/Career Readiness
    Being College/Career ready is more than a lack of a deficit in basic skills of reading, writing, and math. It is more than being eligible to participate in postsecondary education and training opportunities. Because of our economy’s continued transition to a high-skills knowledge based economy, individuals will need to continue learning throughout their working lives. When a student graduates from high school ready for college and career, he or she is equipped and able to succeed in a range of postsecondary settings. In order to be successful, students understand their interests and what motivates them so they can make well informed career choices and accurately assess the content knowledge and skills they need to be prepared. For this reason, schools should approach College/Career readiness from a student’s perspective rather than from a “one size fits all” institutional perspective that tends to view readiness in terms of remediation.

Model Practices: Some example model practices in this area may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Ensure a common understanding of what college and career readiness means – that all students are prepared for success after high school so that they can pursue a full range of postsecondary opportunities, including college degree and certificate programs, employment training, apprenticeships, or military service.
  • Do more than declare College and Career readiness as a goal. Align instruction to college and career based academic standards. Design courses and curricula that make meaningful applications to careers as well as address broad student needs for college and career readiness, including academies, internships, and career pathway programs.
  • At a minimum, to keep students on the path to high school graduation, establish a system to monitor student course completion and success, beginning in grade 6. Establish systems that monitor a variety of outcome measures such as absentee rates, course and subject grades, 6th and 8th grade assessment results, 9th grade course completion and grades, performance and assessment results for core middle and high school courses, course failure rates and patterns across student groups, and ongoing credit accumulation rates (e.g., percent of students in the 10th, 11th and 12th grades earning the required number of credits as of the end of the most recent grading period).
  • Teach students how to manage conflict, manage social and work demands, and to be perseverant problem solvers, good communicators, and team players.
  • Build a college and career ready culture that begins from the very beginning of a student’s educational experience. Provide children three to six years of age with sufficient time, materials, and teacher support to participate in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education in an environment that supports playful exploration of ideas.
  • Align career and college readiness curriculum, graduation standards, assessments, dual credit programs, the Early Assessment Program (EAP), placement exams, and placement criteria by utilizing professional communities of practice that include teachers, counselors, administrators, postsecondary faculty, and appropriate college and university representatives.
  1. UC/CSU A-G Course Requirements, Advanced Placement, & Early Assessment Program
    California supports the use of multiple measures of college and career readiness including “a-g” course completion, scores on Advanced Placement (AP) tests, grade 11 Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments in English language arts and mathematics, International Baccalaureate (IB) exams, Dual Enrollment, and Career Technical Education (CTE) pathway completion.
    Successfully completing the “a-g” courses that satisfy University of California (UC) or California State University (CSU) entrance requirements demonstrates an understanding of the content knowledge necessary to be successful in postsecondary settings. Student performance on AP exams provides a measure of college and career readiness that is comparable nationwide. The EAP is embedded within the 11th grade Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments for English language arts and mathematics. All students who take this test receive scores that include a status report of college preparedness. There are four possible status levels: Ready, Conditionally Ready, Not Yet Ready, and Not Ready. In conjunction with additional information provided through the EAP, students use their status level to determine an academic path for their senior year in high school that will prepare them for college level courses.

Model Practices: Some example model practices in this area may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Provide school counselors with the skills and knowledge necessary for promoting equitable participation and performance of all student groups in AP, IB, and Dual Enrollment courses, as well as courses that meet UC requirements for a-g designation.
  • Regularly perform transcript audits of 10th and 11th grade students to ensure that they are moving successfully towards completion of all A–G courses. Consider more flexible A–G substitutions to include vocational opportunities to help guide the provision of education to children and young people who are at risk of disengaging or already disengaged from education.
  • Regularly monitor and review participation rates of under-represented student groups, including EL and low-income students, in AP, IB, and Dual Enrollment courses, courses that meet UC requirements for a-g designation, and CTE pathway completion.
  • Ensure that middle school and high school curricula are vertically aligned to prepare students to take AP, IB, or other rigorous courses. High school course alignment should begin in sixth grade. Educators emphasize the importance of starting early so that when students have an opportunity to take AP, IB, or other rigorous courses, they have the fundamentals on which to build.
  • Emphasize collaboration among AP and IB teachers to share best practices and new materials.
  • Pay for the AP Exam of every student that completes an AP course. This practice speaks to the LEA’s culture of removing obstacles, especially for those students who might have considered cost as an accessibility issue.

Return to LCFF/Whole Child Resource Map

Questions:   Jonathan Feagle | LCFF@cde.ca.gov | 916-319-0261
Last Reviewed: Monday, August 29, 2022
Related Content
  • LCFF Resources: Priority 4 Student Achievement
    Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) Priority 4 addresses test performance, getting college and career ready, English learners and reclassification, advanced placement exams and preparing for college by the Early Assessment Program.
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