SANTA MONICA-MALIBU UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

PRESS RELEASE

Contact: Lisle Staley

310-450-8338, Ext. 286

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 5, 2000

Santa Monica-Malibu School District 2000 API Growth Targets

All of the schools in the Santa Monica-Malibu School District for which an Academic Performance Index (API) was calculated exceeded the growth targets set by the State a year ago. Two district schools, Santa Monica Alternative School House and Olympic High School, did not have APIs generated for them since the California Department of Education does not calculate APIs for alternative or continuation schools.

The API is the cornerstone of the Public Schools Accountability Act (PSAA) signed into law in 1999. This law authorized the development of a new accountability system for California public schools that includes the API, growth targets and awards based on API growth.

Results of the Stanford 9 test, given in spring 1999 and spring 2000 as part of the state's Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) program, were used to calculate the schools' 1999 API and 2000 API. The 1999 API established the base for a school's academic performance and set an annual target for growth. The state established 800 as the interim API score that schools should strive to meet. The 1999-2000 API growth results for all schools are posted at http://www.cde.ca.gov/psaa/api on the Internet.

Assistant Superintendent Sue Gee noted, "Our schools worked very hard to incorporate last year's 1999 Stanford 9 results into their plans for improving student learning, and those efforts paid off. All of our schools exceeded their school wide targets and student subgroup targets and may therefore be eligible for monetary and non-monetary awards. We will continue to work toward ensuring academic success for all our students."

Parents should address their questions about the Public Schools Accountability Act, school API success, school plans for continuing to improve their school's academic performance, or API-based awards to their student's school office.

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Information Regarding the 1999-2000 Academic Performance Index (API) Growth Report

The attached information regarding the 1999-2000 API growth for schools was released to districts on the afternoon of October 2nd. All of the schools for which API targets were reported met both their overall (school wide) targets and their comparable improvement targets. The only two schools in the district that did not receive API scores were SMASH and Olympic. The State does not calculate APIs for alternative or continuation schools.

The information on the following chart includes several calculations. The first column on the left shows the percent of students tested at a school on the STAR. This percentage was calculated by dividing the number of students tested by the number enrolled on the first day of testing. The total enrollment was adjusted by subtracting any students who were exempted from the STAR via either parent exemption or by their Individualized Education Program.

The second column entitled 2000 API (Growth) indicates the new API for each school listed for the 1999-2000 school listed for the 1999-2000 school year. The third column (1999 API - Base) lists the original API for the 1998-1999 school year. The fourth column shows the growth target that each school needed to meet in 1999-2000, and the fifth column shows the number of points each school actually went up during 1999-2000.

For example, during the 1999-2000 school year, 100% of the enrollment at John Muir Elementary took the STAR (not including those students who were exempted from testing). The API at John Muir this year was 683. Last year (1998-1999) John Muir's API was 602. John Muir's API was supposed to go up this year by 10 points (per the fourth column), but actually went up 81 points (see the fifth column).

The four columns on the right-hand side of the sheet indicate which schools in the district met their school wide targets, their comparable improvement targets, or both of these targets. The final column indicates which of the schools is eligible for State funded awards for having met the API targets. In this case, all of the schools listed met each of the targets and are eligible for State funded awards.

If a school meets its comparable improvement target, this means that each numerically significant ethnic and socioeconomically disadvantaged subgroup at that school demonstrated comparable improvement. Each numerically significant subgroup had to meet at least 80% of the overall school wide target in order for a school to have comparable improvement.