|For Immediate Release|
|Wednesday, October 18, 2017|
|Contact:||Jacqueline Reis, 781-338-3115|
State Releases 2017 Accountability Results
Seven high schools commended, accountability "pause" for K-8 and Randolph no longer a Level 4 district
MALDEN - The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education released accountability results today in conjunction with assessment results.
Acting Commissioner Jeff Wulfson commended seven high schools for high achievement, making strong progress and/or narrowing proficiency gaps. The seven commended high schools are Abington High School, Apponequet Regional High School in Lakeville (part of the Freetown-Lakeville Regional School District), Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School in Upton, Lynnfield High School, Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical High in Lexington, Swampscott High School and Westwood High School.
"I am proud to recognize these schools for their steadfast work in helping their students meet challenging goals," Acting Commissioner Jeff Wulfson said. "The seven schools are from a variety of settings and reflect the strength and variety of the Commonwealth's public schools."
Last month, three additional Massachusetts public schools received the U.S. Department of Education's designation as 2017 National Blue Ribbon Schools. Blue Ribbon Schools are recognized in two categories: closing gaps and exemplary high performance. This year, Heights Elementary School in Sharon and White Street School in Springfield were commended for closing gaps, and Old Post Road School in Walpole was commended for high performance.
Commissioner Wulfson also announced today that the Randolph Public Schools are exiting their Level 4 designation. Randolph was designated a Level 4 district in November 2007, before the current accountability system was in place. Commissioner Wulfson decided to remove that designation after staff determined that the district has increased its capacity to continue improvement work.
"This is a great day in Randolph Public Schools as I am proud to see our district reach this milestone," Randolph Superintendent Thomas Anderson said. "I am grateful to the educators, families and community members who dedicated themselves over many years to continually serving our students better, and I am confident that our schools will continue to improve."
Most elementary and middle schools did not receive an accountability rating this year. This spring was the first administration of the next-generation MCAS to grades 3-8 in English language arts and math, while the older ("legacy") MCAS was used for the 10th grade tests and for science tests in grades 5 and 8. Also this year, ESE outlined a new, more comprehensive accountability system that was designed to comply with the recent federal Every Student Succeeds Act.
Because of the new assessment and the transition to a new accountability system, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted on an "accountability pause" for any school that serves students in grades 3-8 and which had an accountability rating of Level 1, 2 or 3 in 2016. The only exception was for elementary and middle schools where less than 90 percent of students participated in the test. In those cases, the school was designated Level 3. The new accountability system will be used to evaluate schools and districts beginning in fall 2018.
There are no new Level 4 schools this year. Existing Level 4 schools will retain that designation for at least one more year and will continue to receive targeted assistance from ESE. Commissioner Wulfson noted that several of the existing Level 4 schools have started to show progress and will be candidates for exiting Level 4 status next year if they maintain that progress under the new accountability system.
Accountability data is included in school and district Profiles and at http://www.doe.mass.edu/accountability/lists-tools.html.