Verified Data FAQsThe most commonly asked questions about valid and reliable assessments and measures of postsecondary outcomes to be used in the charter school renewal process.
Charter School Performance Categories
Which charter schools are required to use verified data for charter renewals?
Schools that are in the low and middle performance category on the California Department of Education’s Charter School Performance data file are required to use verified data to support their petition for renewal. The Charter School Performance data file, which includes the performance category for all charter schools, is located at Legislation Impacting Charters, Charter School Performance Categories.
Are Dashboard Alternative School Status (DASS) schools subject to the verified data process?
No. DASS charter schools have separate renewal criteria and therefore are not subject to the verified data process. Assembly Bill 1505 outlines a specific process for DASS renewal.
To determine the performance categories for Criterion 2 (i.e., comparing the school and student groups to the statewide average), which student groups are compared to the statewide average?
There are two steps to be performed for Criterion 2. In Step 1, all student groups that, at the state level, score above the statewide average are removed from school-level analyses. (For example, in the 2019 Charter School Performance data file, four student groups were removed from the school-level analyses: White, Asian, Filipino, and Two or More Races). In Step 2, each remaining student group (with 30 or more students at the charter school) is compared to their respective statewide student group average on each academic indicator (English language arts/literacy, Mathematics, English Learner Progress Indicator, and College/Career Indicator). If a majority of the student groups performed above the statewide student-group average for all indicators, the school qualifies for High Performing presumptive renewal under Criterion 2.
For the school-level analyses, two years of data must be used. However, the student group comparison is done separately for each year. For example, if a student group has less than 30 students in 2018, but more than 30 students in 2019, that student group data will be compared to their respective statewide average for 2019 only. Information on how performance categories are determined is available at Determining Charter School Performance Category (PDF).
What is the purpose of verified data?
As required in Assembly Bill 1505, verified data is used in the charter school renewal process for schools in the low and middle performance categories. These charter schools must use verified data to show measurable increases in academic achievement or strong postsecondary outcomes. Increases in academic achievement are defined as showing one-year’s progress for each year in school. Strong postsecondary outcomes are defined as achieving rates of college enrollment, persistence, and completion that are equal to those of their peers.
Which assessments were adopted by the State Board of Education (SBE) for charter schools to demonstrate progress in academic achievement?
At its November 2020 meeting, the SBE adopted 14 academic progress indicators that met the established criteria and that may be used in the renewal process. Assessments that are not on the list may not be used as verified data. The SBE approved assessments are available at Verified Data Criteria and Adopted Indicators.
What qualifies as “one year’s progress”? (Updated 11-Mar-2021)
Each vendor provided guidance on evaluating for one-year’s progress. This guidance is listed in Attachment 1, Table 2 of November 2020 SBE Agenda Item 14 (DOCX; Posted 23-Oct-2020). There is one exception: the Smarter Balanced Summary Assessments do not have criteria for one-year’s progress (see Question 7).
The SBE has not adopted a minimum threshold of students making one-year’s growth that would constitute a measurable increase in student achievement. It is recommended that the authorizer, in consultation with the charter school, make these determinations.
What qualifies as “one year’s progress” for the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments?
Change in scale score from one grade to another is not uniform across the entire range of student performance. The California Department of Education has created tables to help interpret changes in scale score between adjacent grades. These tables are available at Assessments – Average Scale Score Change.
Can California’s Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments be used as verified data?
No. California Education Code Section 60642.7(b) prohibits results from the Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments being used for any high-stakes purpose, including accountability.
Can English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC) practice test be used for verified data?
No. The ELPAC Practice Test was not adopted as verified data by the State Board of Education.
How does a charter school and/or authorizer determine the percentage of students that need to make one year’s progress?
Assembly Bill 1505 does not stipulate a minimum percentage of students that must make one year’s progress. The California Department of Education recommends that the charter school and authorizer discuss the percentage of students that must meet the criteria.
Can CORE data be used as verified data?
The CORE growth model was not adopted by the State Board of Education (SBE) as verified data. However, the SBE did adopt the following related Data Use Procedure:
- California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP): Specified CAASPP reported data can only be used in a manner consistent with the data reported on the CAASPP website and California School Dashboard (Dashboard). CAASPP data, and methodologies for analyzing CAASPP data that are mutually agreed upon by the chartering authority and charter school, may be used to supplement Dashboard results. However, CAASPP data may not be used to dispute the Dashboard results.
When the state adopts a growth measure, will it replace the current verified data? (Updated 05-Aug-2021)
Assembly Bill 1505 allows the State Board of Education (SBE) to replace the verified data list with the state’s growth model. Once the SBE adopts a growth model (expected at the March 2021 meeting) it may discuss the option to reconsider the current verified data at future meetings. Please keep in mind that the state’s growth model would only apply to grades four through eight. Additionally, the verified data section of Assembly Bill 1505 is scheduled to sunset on January 1, 2026.
Can Career Technical Education (CTE) data be used to demonstrate strong postsecondary outcomes?
Assembly Bill 1505 does not include CTE data in the criteria for strong postsecondary outcomes. Therefore, CTE data cannot be used for this purpose.
Which postsecondary outcome indicators were adopted by the State Board of Education?
The postsecondary outcomes adopted by the State Board of Education at its November 2020 meeting are available at Verified Data. Additional information on postsecondary outcomes are available in November 2020 SBE Agenda Item 14 (DOCX; Posted 23-Oct-2020).
What is the criterion for demonstrating strong secondary outcomes?
Assembly Bill 1505 states that students must perform equal to similar peers, but does not define similar peers. The State Board of Education adopted the following Data Use Procedure related to this topic:
- Comparability: For purposes of reporting postsecondary outcomes, comparisons to similar peers may include, but are not limited to, similar demographics, pupil subgroups, first-time college attendance, or other similar circumstances, such as school closures and/or evacuation orders for a portion of the academic year, to the extent such information is available. If no data on similar peers are available, comparisons may be made to statewide data that includes all traditional and charter schools serving a similar grade span.
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