The Academic Performance Index, more commonly refeared to as the API, is about to under go a serious remolding. According to the California Department of Education, the API has previously been dictated solely off CST standardized testing and the CHASSE high school exit exam. After pushing for changes, reformers got bill SB 1458 signed by Governor Jerry Brown. This bill will redefine our schools API score, demanding that they consist of only 60% of test scores with the other 40% to be determined.
As to be expected, many people are very excited about this change, and everyone is trying to get their peice of that 40%.
Senate President Darrell Steinberg stated, “I believe this measure will prove to be the most significant education reform bill of the decade, fueling linked learning and fundamentally changing what we teach and how we measure accomplishment. I’m pleased the Governor agrees that test scores alone are hardly a true indicator of the success or failure of our students.”
Organizations like the California Endowment are suggesting health be a factor in the 40%, and well as attendance, suspension rates, and other indicators of academic success. This is just one of those things where everyone wants their finger in the pot, and not everyone is going to be happy that they could not contribute.
Peter Batkin, a history and English teacher at Kit Carson Middle School commented, “The revised API should include the ‘a to g’ progress and completion rate, graduation rate, and allowances for schools that offer AP coursework.”
Just like most people he is very excited about this bill, and the opportunity it offers for the many school that don’t test well.
And while there is a lot of good talk about this bill, some say this bill is “nothing but smoke and mirrors.”
An anonymous Sac City Unified School District teacher has claimed, “With all the other education reform our system will be completing, the API won’t matter anymore.”