Indiana’s School Ratings System Will Now Consider ESL Progress and Absenteeism

By Andrew Pillow

Indiana’s controversial rating system is getting an upgrade. The A-F scale that Indiana uses to judge the quality of schools will now consider chronic absenteeism and the progress of non-native speakers in learning English.

The Every Student Succeed Act (ESSA) is the driving force behind the changes. ESSA allows states more leeway in how they measure the quality of schools. The addition of attendance and ESL components to the rating system is part of Indiana’s plan to comply with the new law.

According to officials from the DOE, attendance was targeted because of research stating how important attendance is to academic achievement. Schools will not be punished for chronic attendance issues but, higher scores will be given to schools without them.

The non-native speaker component of the rating will be measured by an assessment. The assessment will measure the progress of non-native speakers in learning English skills. The other change is that now, this assessment will be used starting in kindergarten which is earlier than it was previously given.

Read more here. (Indiana Public Media)


Andrew Pillow

Andrew is a technology teacher at KIPP Indy College Prep. He is graduate of the University of Kentucky and a Teach for America Alum. Andrew just recently finished his commitment as a Teach Plus Policy fellow, and he is looking forward to putting the skills he's learned to good use. Andrew has written for several publications in the past on a wide variety of topics but will be sticking to education for his role on Indy/Ed.