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Alternative Methods in Place of Decile for API - Legislative Report

Report to the Legislature: Alternative Methods in Place of Decile Rank for the Academic Performance Index.
California Department of Education

Report to the Governor and Legislature:

Alternative Methods in Place of Decile Rank for the Academic Performance Index
as Required by Education Code Section 52052.9(b)

Executive Summary

This report is required by California Education Code Section 52052.9(b), which states that the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI), in consultation with the Public Schools Accountability Act (PSAA) Advisory Committee, shall report to the Legislature on an alternative method or methods, in place of decile rank of the Academic Performance Index (API), for determining eligibility, preferences, or priorities for any statutory program that currently uses decile rank as a determining factor. This report is due to the Legislature by October 1, 2013.

Between March and September 2013, the California Department of Education (CDE) researched and consulted with the PSAA Advisory Committee and its Technical Design Group (TDG) and developed the following two proposed alternative methods that could be implemented in place of the current API decile ranks:

  • Numeric Method
  • Descriptive Method

Although this report describes these two alternative methods, the Legislature should also consider whether ranks should continue at all, given the anticipated changes to our current accountability system.

This report recommends that decisions about the adoption and implementation of alternative method(s) in place of the current decile ranks should be considered within the context of California's newly evolving accountability system. Recent actions and legislative requirements will produce significant changes to California's assessment and accountability system over the next several years, and these changes will significantly impact the API. Therefore, alternatives provided in this report should be considered for implementation once the new accountability system is firmly in place.

If you have any questions regarding this report, please contact Jenny Singh, Administrator, Academic Accountability Unit, by phone at 916-319-0437 or by e-mail at You can find this report on the CDE API Web page. If you need a copy of this report, please contact Betty Miura, Research Analyst, Academic Accountability Unit, by phone at 916-319-0863 or by e-mail at

Questions:   Analysis, Measurement, and Accountability Reporting Division | 916-319-0896
Last Reviewed: Thursday, August 10, 2017
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