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March 5--  Today, President Pro Tempore Tommie Williams (R – Lyons) passed SB 410 which adopts indicators such as quality of learning by students, financial efficiency and school climate for individual schools and school systems. The legislation requires a numerical score rating for individual schools and school systems based on student achievement, achievement gap closure and student progress. It also requires that a letter grade be assigned to each school and school system and included on each school and school system’s annual report card. The grade is derived from the numerical score, with a majority of the grade based on student achievement. SB 410 passed with a vote of 38 to 13.


"AYP is a pass/fail system, which did not provide a way to track progress or improvements," said Sen. Williams. "This bill implements new criteria based on DOE's waiver request. The end result will allow us to reward schools for improving and incentivizes them to make progress."


The proposed letter grade law creates a open, transparent A-F letter grade rating system which allows parents and the public to easily compare the relative performance of schools in their district and throughout the state. Letter grades assigned to each school and/or school system will reflect the student's academic performance as well as other important factors which include improvement in student achievement, graduation rates and closing the achievement gap of historically underperforming groups.