News Releases

August 06, 2012

Department Releases Accountability Determinations for Schools

The Vermont Department of Education (VT DOE) released the 2012 school accountability determinations as required by the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) today.

Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) determinations are based on the New England Common Assessment Program (NECAP) assessments and the Vermont Alternate Assessment Portfolio (VTAAP) given to Vermont public school students in grades three through eight and grade 11. The NECAP was administered in October 2011. This is the seventh year the NECAP has been given in the elementary and middle grades, and the fifth time it was given to students in grade 11.

A school makes AYP by meeting targets set by the state as required by NCLB. In Vermont, these targets increase every three years with the goal of 100 percent proficiency by 2014. A school that does not make AYP for two consecutive years in the same indicator enters School Improvement status, which requires schools to take specific actions designed to improve student achievement in the area(s) designated as not making AYP.

2011 marked the final target increase (before the 100 percent proficiency goal) in Vermont. As a consequence, the department has seen a significant increase in the number of schools that did not make AYP. 198 schools are identified for school improvement in one or more areas. 101 of those are new schools entering their first year of school improvement. Additionally, 23 schools did not make AYP for the first time. There are no formal consequences for those schools. See the following table for a complete breakdown of the AYP data.

“Vermont has maintained high standards and a rigorous assessment of those standards. It is not surprising that as we get closer to the 2014 NCLB expectation of 100 percent proficiency, we will continue to see more schools not meeting AYP.” said Commissioner Vilaseca. “Vermont will revise its accountability system when the reauthorization of the ESEA provides us with that opportunity. Our plan has always been to design a system that does not stress a single measure using a standardized test to determine our students’, our schools’, or our state’s success in meeting standards.”

Vermont continues the transition to the Common Core State Standards in mathematics and literacy/ELA and to the Smarter Balanced Assessment System. This system will provide more authentic multiple measures of student achievement upon which to construct an accountability system that determines whether students are making progress toward career and college readiness. As Vermont works with other states to develop a strong assessment of the new Common Core Standards, reasonable modifications to the accountability system will allow Vermont to retain high expectations for students and to demonstrate Vermont’s relatively strong performance amongst other states.

A wider range of schools was identified for school improvement status this year. These schools bring a variety of challenges and needs. The VT DOE will help the supervisory unions and schools to ensure that the educational programs students receive provide the content, knowledge, and skills to meet rigorous academic standards. The VT DOE’s goal is to help the supervisory unions and schools look at their curriculum, to figure out what is working and what is not, to build on the pieces that are working and to change those that are not.

“We face a challenge as we transition to new standards, new assessments, and new accountability systems,” said Deputy Commissioner John Fischer. “We will focus our support and interventions in schools with these transitions in mind. Our staff is prepared to bring increased support to the superintendents, principals, and teachers to assist in the implementation of Common Core Standards, utilizing research based practices to improve school effectiveness, and to prepare for the Smarter Balanced assessments in 2015.”

More information on school and district performance can be found on the VT DOE website:

Complete press release packet available online:

Deputy Commissioner John Fischer and Assessment Director Michael Hock are available for comment regarding AYP; additionally Glenn Bailey, Education Analysis & Data Management Director, is available to discuss the AYP data.

Contact Angela Ross, Public Information Officer, at (802) 828-3154 for more information.

Source: Department of Education
Last Updated at: August 06, 2012 11:21:11