One-third of schools failed to make AYP

One-third of public schools (32%) did not make Adequate Yearly Progress in the 2008-2009 school year, according a new report by the Center on Education Policy (CEP).

In 9 states and the District of Columbia, at least half the public schools did not make AYP. In a majority of the states (35 including D.C.) at least ¼ of the schools did not make AYP. The percentage of public schools not making AYP varied significantly, from 6% in Wisconsin to 77% in Florida.

“If the current AYP-based accountability system is not replaced, in some states nearly all schools could be labeled as failing by school year 2012-13,” the report says. “This would render meaningless the concept of singling out underperforming schools for attention and would overburden state departments of education, which must provide assistance to these schools.”

Many of the differences among states are most likely due to state variations in standards, tests, cut scores for proficient performance on those tests, and methods for calculating AYP rather than to the quality of their schools, according to the CEP.

President Obama recently announced his plans to eliminate the current accountability system under the No Child Left Behind Act, which requires public schools to make adequate yearly progress in raising student achievement as measured by state tests and other indicators. The Center of Education Policy also supports eliminating AYP. The current system overidentifies public schools for improvement and makes no distinction between schools in which one group of students missed one or 2 AYP targets and those in which students overall missed multiple targets, says the CEP.


“How Many Schools Have Not Made Adequate Yearly Progress Under the No Child Left Behind Act?” Center on Education Policy, March 2010.

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