No Child Left Behind (NCLB)
April 02, 2011

NYSUT NCLB Fact Sheet 2: Differentiated Accountability

Source: Research and Educational Services

Download: Complete Bulletin. PDF file.


The federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) requires the performance of public schools receiving Title I money to be evaluated annually, according to the state’s approved assessment accountability system. The performance of students in New York state is measured through annual assessments in ELA and math in grades 3 through 8, science assessments in grades 4 and 8, as well as high school ELA and math Regents exams. At the high school level, NCLB also requires states to use student graduation rates as performance indicators. The performance of all students is reported, including specific student subgroups (based on ethnicity, income status, disabilities and English proficiency) as long as there are at least 30 students in the subgroup.
The United States Department of Education (USDOE) approved the New York State Education Department’s (SED) application to participate in the NCLB Differentiated Accountability Pilot Program. Starting with the 2009-2010 school year, they will use the results of assessments administered during the 2008-2009 school year on individual schools only. Over time, the state can evaluate the model and make adjustments before applying it to districts.

The approved differentiated accountability model recognizes that schools with systematic failure of all student groups require very different interventions than schools in which failure to make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) is based on the performance of a single group of students. The flexibility inherent in the model will allow school districts and SED to target interventions, resources and strategies which are customized to better address the needs of students not making adequate yearly progress. This is a positive change for New York state because data show that most of the schools identified through the accountability system are identified because of a single subgroup not making AYP for single accountability measure. The less pervasive the performance problem, the more flexibility a school will have in developing a strategy to help student groups meet AYP.

New York’s approved accountability model takes the eight current levels of designation and condenses them to three phases, improvement, corrective action, and restructuring. Within each of these phases there are categories based on the number of subject areas and student groups involved. These new designations and specific categories of intervention, compared to current designations, are described in Table 1, Accountability Designations. Schools move from one phase to the next when they fail to make AYP for two consecutive years. Schools in any phase can be classified as a ‘School Under Registration Review’ (SURR) if all students fail to make AYP or the school is deemed to be most in need of improvement. The interventions and SED oversight become more intensive as a school moves from one phase to the next. These interventions are designed, according to SED, to provide schools with the resources necessary to move all students to proficiency by 2013-2014.

(Download PDF for Table 1 - Accountability Designations)

3/11–This fact sheet reflects the lastest available information and may be subject to change.


Download: Complete Bulletin. PDF file.