In their proposed rules on school accountability, federal officials are attempting to walk a fine and aggressively scrutinized line.
They say they’ve tried to offer the meaningful flexibility to states and districts under the Every Student Succeeds Act that many say the law requires, while answering the call to make sure that all students are accounted for and given appropriate, equitable support.
What remains to be seen, however, is whether a variety of others—such as Republican members of Congress and civil rights advocates—will be satisfied with the U.S. Department of Education’s foray into crafting accountability regulations for the successor to the No Child Left Behind Act.
The draft rules, issued May 26, would not impose specific, statistical requirements for how much various indicators would count toward accountability.
Districts would have the freedom to decide on their own school turnaround plans. States could set their own academic goals, and measures of interim progress. And states would get significant flexibility in defining what it means for certain groups of students…