ESEA Flexibility Request (Waiver)
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ESEA Flexibility Request (Waiver)

The U.S. Department of Education granted Washington’s waiver request from certain Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) requirements in July 2012. The decision gives Washington the opportunity to implement bold reforms around standards and accountability. It also allows state and local educators to decide how to best meet the individual needs of students they serve. Full press release.

The 338 schools identified as Reward, Priority, Focus, or Emerging for 2012–13 were announced in July 2012. The 397 schools identified as Reward, Priority, Focus and Emerging for 2013–14 were announced in February 2013. The lists of schools and brief definitions for each list follow. More complete definitions may be found in the Definitions and Calculations Used to Identify Reward, Priority, Focus, and Emerging Schools document.

2013 Reward, Priority, Focus, and Emerging Schools

Reward schools are classified as either “highest performing schools” or “high-progress schools.” A highest performing school is a Title I school that has met Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) or Annual Measurable Objectives (AMOs) in both Reading and Math for three years for the school and for all subgroups. A high-progress school is a Title I school in the top 10 percent of Title I schools in Reading and Math (combined) for three years with respect to both performance and improvement. Schools with significant gaps in achievement among subgroups are not eligible for recognition as Reward schools.

Priority schools are among the lowest 5 percent of Title I schools in the state, based on achievement on statewide assessments in Reading and Math (combined) over three years. The list of Priority schools also includes Title I-eligible and Title I-participating high schools with consistent graduation rates of less than 60 percent over three years. The goal of identifying Priority schools is to turn around performance, close persistent opportunity gaps, and substantially improve student learning and outcomes. The 2013–14 list of Priority schools also includes the 46 Priority schools continuing forward from the 2012–13 school year.

Focus schools are among the lowest 10 percent of Title I schools in the state. They have the consistently lowest performing subgroups on statewide assessments in Reading and Math (combined) over three years. The list of Focus Schools also includes Title I high schools with subgroups that have consistent graduation rates of less than 60 percent over three years. The goal of identifying Focus schools is to turn around performance, close persistent opportunity gaps, and substantially improve student learning and outcomes—for all students and for identified subgroups. The 2013–14 list of Focus schools also includes the 92 Focus schools continuing forward from the 2012–13 school year.

Emerging schools include the next 5 percent of Title I schools from the bottom of the list used to identify Priority schools and the next 10 percent of Title I schools from the bottom of the list used to identify Focus schools. The first set of schools is referred to as “Emerging-Priority”; the second set is referred to as “Emerging-Focus.” All Emerging schools identified in 2012–13 continue forward into 2013–14. Some have been re-classified as either Priority or Focus based on the most recent three years of data.

 

2012 Schools: Priority schools | Focus schools | Reward schools

Additional Resources

Definitions and Calculations Used to Identify Reward, Priority, Focus, and Emerging Schools (PDF)

Use of Title I Funds and ESEA Flexibility, August 17, 2012, Webinar presentation

Office of Student and School Success

U.S. Department of Education ESEA Flexibility

Washington State's ESEA Approval Letter

 

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