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i_coessacomm_2016a_2016-12-13t13:07:51z2 Hearing Summary

Date: 12/13/2016


Federal and State Education Policies


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02:24 PM -- Federal and State Education Policies

The committee recessed.

02:43 PM

The committee came back to order. Julie Pelegrin, Office of Legislative Legal Services, introduced herself and distributed a research memorandum and copy of her power point presentation to the committee (Attachments B and C). She spoke about potential conflicts between the new federal law and current state law and areas of law where the legislature has options it did not have before the passage of ESSA. She described statutory cleanup related to testing and the high school assessment exception and how the ACT may not meet new requirements. She spoke about the required participation rate of 95 percent and how the state must now incorporate that into its accountability system. She said that state law now requires districts to have an opt out plan that cannot punish parents or students. Ms. Pelegrin responded to questions from the committee regarding the opt out rate. She said that SBE directed the department to exclude parent-excused students from calculating the participation rate. She spoke about how low participation rates invalidate data, so that CDE has added a rating for insufficient data, but that statute does not allow for that. She suggested a statutory change that addresses low participation rates and continued responding to questions from the committee.

Attachment B.pdfAttachment B.pdf Attachment C.pdfAttachment C.pdf

Ms. Pelegrin spoke about English language learners (ELL) and addressed the differences between ESSA and state law regarding the number of years an ELL student can be tested in his or her native language. Ms. Pelegrin responded to questions from the committee regarding ELL students. She pointed out that state law directs the department to apply for a waiver to exclude ELL students' scores from accountaability for the first two years, but that ESSA makes allowances for only the first 12 months, uses scores only for growth in a student's second year, and in the third and subsequent years uses the scores for both proficiency and growth.

Ms. Pelegrin described the new requirements for performance indicators and identifying schools for support, in particular identifying the lowest-performing five percent of schools as required by ESSA. She continued speaking about differences between state and federal law in the area of accountability, including the timeline for support for low-performing schools. She spoke about the assessment pilot program in which up to seven states will participate, and about requirements relating to educators. Ms. Pelegrin responded to questions from the committee.

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