ERIC Number: ED449220
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Patterns of Response in Four High Schools under State Accountability Policies in Vermont and New York.
DeBray, Elizabeth; Parson, Gail; Woodworth, Katrina
This paper examines the responses of four high schools to new accountability policies in two states, New York and Vermont. In each state, one school that was better positioned with respect to the policy and one that was a target of the policy were studied. New York's policy attaches high stakes for students though the Regents high school exit examination. In Vermont, school accountability is part of a broader policy of comprehensive finance equalization and a self-assessment action planning process. In both states theories of action assume that performance information from the accountability system will drive change. Schools were examined through interviews with key personnel, including teachers. The variations between the types of schools in response to the policies far exceeded the variation attributable to state policy design. In the high-performing schools, the policies in both cases put a spotlight on helping low-performing students. In the low-performing schools in both states there was a pattern of compliance without capacity with minimal meaningful or productive engagement on the part of the staff. The needs of the two low-performing schools suggest blind spots in the state policies with respect to theory, use of data, incentives, and short-term, school-level goals. The common patterns suggest that state policymakers need to rethink policy instruments for the lowest performing schools. (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York; Vermont