Friday, April 30, 2010

Priorities for School and District Accountability

Last week I shared the vision for the state strategic plan and the goals and measures for the state. This week, I am sharing the vision for a new accountability system and school/district report cards.

There will be four strategic priorities with specific strategies and annual indicators of progress. These priorities, strategies and indicators are based on federal guidance provided by Race to the Top, State Fiscal Stabilization Funds and proposed reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). The priorities, strategies and indicators also are based on state guidance provided by 2009’s Senate Bill 1 , 2002’s Senate Bill 168 (KRS 158.649) , 2006’s Senate Bill 130 (KRS 158.6453) and other state statutes.

Over the coming year, we will begin working with advisory groups to more clearly define the district and school indicators that are reflected in the listing below. There is much work to do in defining the new common core assessments that are due by 2012. We must define growth to the student level and match with classrooms and schools. Also, we must develop an index that reflects school and district performance in closing gaps among groups of students. Perhaps once of largest challenges is clearly defining what “career-ready” means.

We are excited to announce that the Teacher and Principal Working Conditions Survey will be initiated in the spring of 2011, and Program Reviews will be piloted in 2010-11. With support from Race to the Top funding, we hope to be able to develop clear definitions of effective teachers and leaders with the support of steering committees comprised of teachers, leaders and other partners.

Finally, we will revise district and school report cards to match the indicators in the strategic plan.

This is multi-year work and will require a tremendous amount of collaboration between all partners. However, with fewer priorities (four), very clear strategies (six) and indicators that are aligned between state and federal requirements through our strategic plan, I feel very confident that we can meet and exceed the expectations of Kentucky citizens.

Through Senate Bill 1, citizens have mandated that we must have a greater percentage of high school graduates prepared for college and career. Failure to meet this goal impacts our state economy; however, even more importantly, failure to meet this goal impacts the lives of our children.

Proposed Strategic Plan Components for 2010-2014 Kentucky P-12 Education

Strategic Priority: Next-Generation Learners
Strategy: Common Core Standards and Balanced Assessments
Indicators: proficiency, growth and gap rates in literacy, numeracy, science and social studies on common core assessment; career readiness

Strategic Priority: Next-Generation Professionals
Strategy: Effective Teachers and Leaders
Indicators: percent of effective teachers; percent of effective leaders

Strategic Priority: Next-Generation Support Systems
Strategy: Data systems that Inform Instruction and Policy Decisions
Indicators: Working Conditions Survey; Program Reviews

Strategic Priority: Next-Generation Schools and Districts
Strategies: Turn Around Low-Achieving Schools; Create Innovative Schools and Programs for Next-Generation Learning
Indicators: effective schools and districts per state report card


  1. Dr. Holliday,

    In regards to Next Generation Professionals and Districts, particularly targeting teacher and principal effectiveness, who do you plan to bring into the fold to begin examining these issues and how much longer can Kentucky (majority of districts) continue effectiveness with rather antiquated evaluation systems?

  2. Thanks for your question. We plan on bring representatives of teachers, principals, teacher preparation, parents, business, and legislators to work on both teacher and principal effectiveness. we have pilots already working and will begin meetings with our steering committees in May. ALL KY teachers will have opportunities for input as will all principals.