The Aransas County Independent School District (ACISD) is unhappy with its grades. The district believes the Cs and Ds on its report card don’t reflect its true quality and accomplishments. On Jan. 19, ACISD trustees passed a resolution calling for the repeal of the A – F rating system that is on schedule to be implemented in the 2017 – 2018 school year. The ACISD resolution states the district’s goal is to “transform education in Aransas County” and “embrace meaningful accountability.”
The new A – F rating system for Texas Public Schools is incomplete and the Texas Education Agency (TEA) has stated the grades shouldn’t be considered predictors of future district or campus performance.
The problem, however, isn’t necessarily the grades. The rating system itself may be flawed. It relies heavily on the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR), a standardized test viewed as unreliable for accurately measuring student learning. School districts with higher percentages of economically disadvantaged students will struggle to earn passing grades, according to the Texas Association of School Administrators. Schools that received As and Bs were largely among districts with poverty levels between 0 and 20 percent.
ACISD joins 359 school districts, as of Jan. 23, in drafting resolutions that call on the Texas legislature to repeal the new rating system and replace it with a community-based system that takes into account the needs of individual districts.