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Accountability Programs

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ABCs of Public Education: North Carolina’s Accountability Program

Students are held accountable for performance through the promotion standards and schools are held accountable by the state’s ABCs of Public Education program.  The ABCs designations for schools are:

  • Schools Making Expected Growth/Gain: Show growth/gain that would reasonably be expected over a year’s time, based on previous performance.
  • Schools Making High Growth/Gain: Show growth/gain that is 10 percent higher than expected growth standard.
  • Schools of Excellence: Have at least 90 percent of students at or above grade level and meet at least expected growth/gain.
  • Schools of Distinction: Have 80-89 percent of students at or above grade level and meet at least expected growth/gain.
  • Schools of Progress: Have 60-79 percent of students at or above grade level and meet at least expected growth/gain.
  • No Recognition: Do not meet expected growth/gain standard, but have at least 60 percent of students at or above grade level.
  • Priority Schools: Have 50-59 percent of students at or above grade level, regardless of growth standard OR below 50 percent, but meet growth standard.
  • Low Performing: Have less than 50 percent of students performing at or above grade level and do not make expected growth.

ABC results are posted on School Profile pages.

No Child Left Behind (NCLB)

No Child Left Behind is a federal law that has as its goals: closing achievement gaps, holding schools accountable for all students, and having a “Highly Qualified” teacher in every classroom. The law’s impact is slightly different for families depending on your school’s success in meeting NCLB target goals and ABCs growth expectations, your child’s success in meeting goals and expectations, and whether or not your school receives Title I funds.

Both the ABCs and NCLB hold high standards for academic achievement, but they measure progress differently. The ABCs model measures student growth from one year to the next while NCLB compares the scores at the same grade levels within subgroups from one year to the next.

In addition to a different model for measuring student achievement, NCLB contains the following provisions:

  • sanctions for schools that do not meet their goals;
  • new standards for teachers and instructional paraprofessionals; and,
  • requirements to inform parents of both their child’s progress and a school’s performance on academic assessments.

More information regarding No Child Left Behind in North Carolina is available at www.ncpublicschools.org/nclb. School report cards are available from your school or online at www.ncreportcards.org.