The bill creates the student academic growth measures grant program (grant program) to assist school districts, boards of cooperative services, and charter schools (local education providers) in creating and applying multiple measures of student academic growth as supplements to state assessments. Depending on the level of rigor, validity, and reliability, the measures may be used to measure student achievement, teacher effectiveness, or the performance of a school or a local education provider, and other local education providers may choose to use the measures or they may be included in the statewide accountability system. A local education provider, solely or in partnership with other local education providers, may apply to receive a grant by providing specified information, including a plan for building the capacity of educators and administrators concerning multiple measures of student academic growth and for developing and implementing a process for creating and applying multiple measures of student academic growth. The local education provider must also agree to an external evaluation of the success of the plan. The state board of education (state board) must adopt rules for awarding the grants. The state board, taking into account recommendations from the department of education (department), must award the grants taking into account whether the applicant is working alone or with other local education providers, the applicant's intended use of the measures, the quality of the applicant's plan, the applicant's capacity for developing rigorous, valid, and reliable measures, and whether the applicant will contract for assistance in developing the measures. The department must contract with an entity to evaluate the rigor, validity, and reliability of the multiple measures of student academic growth and whether the measures are reliable and appropriate for use by other local education providers or for use in the statewide accountability system.
Subject to available appropriations, the department must annually prepare and submit to the education committees of the general assembly a report that includes a summary of the evaluations and a report on implementation of the grant program.
The bill creates the student academic growth measures grant program fund (fund) to consist of moneys appropriated or transferred to the fund by the general assembly for the grant program. If the estimated state education fund end-of-year balance for the 2016-17 budget year is greater than $100 million in December 2016, the state treasurer will transfer from the state education fund to the fund the amount that exceeds $100 million, but not more than $10 million. The department is not required to implement the grant program if less than $500,000 is transferred to the fund. (Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)