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High Schools (HS)
NCLB Reauthorization

To better inform the national debate on No Child Left Behind (NCLB) reauthorization, ECS collected and synthesized recommendations by national organizations to improve the federal law.

ECS' database is organized around 16 issue areas that captured most recommendations. Some organizations did not offer recommendations for all issues, at least according to our analysis. And several recommendations appear more than once since they applied to multiple issue areas.

The summary and full text of all organizations' original recommendations for High Schools (HS) are listed in this report. Please see the main page for additional reports and sources for the database.

Highlights
(See Abbreviation Key at end of table)
 
Organizations that addressed this issue6 of 15
BCSA; Comm. NCLB; Ed Trust; NASSP; NCSL; and NEA

Organizations that did not address this issue: 9 of 15
AASA; AFT; CCSSO; ECS; FEA; NAESP; NASBE; NGA; and NSBA

Comments
While high schools are subject to many NCLB requirements, including assessments, accountability and teaching quality, they seem to have received less scrutiny than elementary and middle schools. Recommendations offered by a handful of organizations, however, could bring more attention to and demands upon secondary schools under the law. This shift would reflect the growing number of state and national efforts to dramatically improve all aspects of America’s high schools.
    
Some organizations recommended that high schools adhere to a common graduation rate definition and be held more accountable for graduating all students. And a few organizations suggested that high schools should connect more closely with and better prepare students for the demands of postsecondary education and work.


Visit ECS' Database on NCLB Reauthorization main page for more information, explanations and access to organizations' original reports. Please note that ECS plans to expand the database as more information becomes available.

Database Last Updated: July 2007

This database was created and compiled by Mary Fulton, ECS policy analyst.
For questions and comments: 303.299.3679 or mfulton@ecs.org
NCLB Reauthorization : American Association of School Administrators (AASA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations indentified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : American Federation of Teachers (AFT)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Business Coalition for Student Achievement (BCSA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation

Provide incentives to align state standards with college and workplace expectations for high school graduates.

HS 1 - Full Recommendation

Provide incentives for states to raise academic standards and improve assessments to align them with college and workplace expectations.

These incentives should enable states to:

  • Improve state standards and assessments regularly, with input from business and higher education, so that students graduate from high school having demonstrated proficiency on assessments of the core knowledge, advanced problem-solving skills and critical thinking capacities needed to succeed in both postsecondary education and the workplace.

 

HS 2 - Summary of Recommendation

Hold high schools accountable for increasing the graduation rate, using a common definition, and graduating students ready for college and work.

HS 2 - Full Recommendation

Provide incentives for states to raise academic standards and improve assessments to align them with college and workplace expectations.
These incentives should enable states to:

  • Reform secondary schools and hold them accountable for increasing the graduation rate, using the common definition adopted by the nation’s governors, and graduating students who are ready for college and work.
HS 3 - Summary of Recommendation

Increase opportunities for Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, honors and certification courses.

 

HS 3 - Full Recommendation

Increase opportunities for high school students to participate in Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, honors and appropriate industry-recognized certification courses.

 

Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Commission on No Child Left Behind (Comm. NCLB)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation Require states to conform to NGA graduation rate compact, hold schools accountable for closing graduation gaps and require schools to disaggregate graduation rate data and "other" AYP indicator.
HS 1 - Full Recommendation Hold schools accountable for improving the graduation rates of all students by closing the graduation-rate gap by 2014 and requiring states to conform to the National Governors Association compact on graduation rates.  Require schools to disaggregate graduation-rate data, as well as the elementary school indicator used for AYP purposes (often school attendance), and use this disaggregated data and indicator in AYP calculations.
HS 2 - Summary of Recommendation Require districts with low performing high schools to develop and implement comprehensive improvement plans.
HS 2 - Full Recommendation Support struggling high schools by requiring districts in which more than half of the high schools did not make AYP—or in which half the students attend high schools that did not make AYP—to develop and implement comprehensive, districtwide high school improvement plans.
HS 3 - Summary of Recommendation Require a 12th-grade state assessment to determine performance gains, teacher and principal effectiveness and preparation for college and work.
HS 3 - Full Recommendation Ensure the continuous achievement of high school students by requiring states to administer an additional assessment in grade 12.

This 12th grade assessment will create a useful measure of a high school’s effectiveness in preparing students for life after high school and make possible the inclusion of growth calculations in AYP for high schools and Highly Qualified and Effective Teacher (HQET) and Highly Effective Principal (HEP) measurements. This assessment would not be the sole determinant of whether a student graduates and receives a diploma. States can consider awarding college credit in state-supported colleges and universities for students who show mastery of college-level material on this assessment.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Education Commission of the States (ECS)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Education Trust (Ed Trust)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation Target 50% of new Title I funds at high schools and use 50% of proposed Curriculum Development Fund for high school level materials.
HS 1 - Full Recommendation Target 50% of any new Title I funds at high schools. In addition, use 50% of the proposed $750 million Curriculum Development Fund to develop and provide high school level materials aligned to state standards.
HS 2 - Summary of Recommendation Require states to use uniformly calculated graduation rates and to identify percent of students graduating within four and five years. Require states to report accuracy of graduation-rate data and calculations to Education Department.
HS 2 - Full Recommendation Require states to use uniform graduation rates that calculate the number of students who graduate with a regular diploma, divided by the number of students who formed the ninth grade cohort for that graduating class, adjusted for transfers both in and out and, further, should be calculated to identify the percent of students graduating within four years and the percent graduating in five years. States must report to the Secretary annually on efforts to ensure accuracy of graduation-rate data and calculations.
HS 3 - Summary of Recommendation Require high schools and districts with group graduation rates of less than 90% to increase four- and five-year overall graduation rates. Growth targets must raise overall graduation rates and reduce gaps between groups.
HS 3 - Full Recommendation Require high schools and districts with group graduation rates of less than 90% to increase four-year overall graduation rates by not less than 5 percentage points over two years, or to increase the five-year rate by not less than 8 percentage points over two years. The graduation growth targets must both raise overall graduation rates and reduce graduation rate gaps between groups.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : Forum on Educational Accountability (FEA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation Extend graduation rate to within five years of entering high school.
HS 1 - Full Recommendation

Extend the graduation rate to within at least five years of entering high school. 

  • The requirement to report graduation within four years does not take into account each student’s individual learning needs. 
  • High school graduation should be based on mastery of subjects, not on completion of seat time.
HS 2 - Summary of Recommendation Require Education Department to accept all state high school "exit" documents as certification of graduation.
HS 2 - Full Recommendation Allow students who complete high school with a state-approved exit document to be counted as graduates.
  • States have approved many types of high school exit documents to meet the unique needs of students.
  • Any document that a state has approved for graduation should be accepted by the Education Department.
HS 3 - Summary of Recommendation Accept state high school "exit" documents for students with disabilities until they are 21 years old.
HS 3 - Full Recommendation

Extend age to 21 years for special-needs students who complete high school with a state-approved exit document to be counted as graduates as defined by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

  • IDEA allows students with disabilities to be educated by and graduate from public high schools until age 21, inclusive; therefore, NCLB should adopt statutes already written into existing federal law.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation Afford states flexibility with AYP graduation rate for students pursuing alternative paths to diploma and for including students with disabilities.
HS 1 - Full Recommendation Afford states the flexibility to include students in their AYP graduation rate who are successfully pursuing alternative paths that are similar in rigor to a high school diploma and provide more flexibility in how students with disabilities are included in graduation rates.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Education Association (NEA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation Apply accountability systems to high schools without increasing dropout rates.
HS 1 - Full Recommendation Require that comprehensive accountability systems appropriately apply to high schools without increasing dropout rates.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National Governors Association (NGA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)

NCLB Reauthorization : National School Boards Association (NSBA)
Capacity Building, Innovation and Research & Development (CIRD)
High Schools (HS)
HS 1 - Summary of Recommendation No recommendations identified for this issue.
Parent and Community Involvement (CPI)


Abbreviation Key for Organizations
AASA = American Association of School Administrators
AFT = American Federation of Teachers
BCSA = Business Coalition for Student Achievement
Comm. NCLB = Commission on No Child Left Behind
CCSSO = Council of Chief State School Officers
ECS = Education Commission of the States
Ed Trust = Education Trust
FEA = Forum on Educational Accountability
NAESP = National Association of Elementary School Principals
NASBE = National Association of State Boards of Education
NASSP = National Association of Secondary School Principals
NCSL = National Conference of State Legislatures
NEA = National Education Association
NGA = National Governors Association
NSBA = National School Boards Association


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