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Lesson in new testing

The replacement for No Child Left Behind didn’t come about easily, and doesn’t account for some things that it should, Superintendent Lisa Noonan said.

“This took a year to put together,” she said. “I’m not going to say there was blood on the floor at every meeting, but it was close.”

Douglas County School District Director of Assessments and Grants Brian Frazier took Douglas County School Board trustees on a tour of the new Nevada school performance framework on Tuesday.



The new system includes a star rating for schools and is part of the Nevada education performance system. A component of the system are teacher and principal evaluations and school accountability. The Nevada Legislature approved connecting school performance to teacher and administrator salaries, and establishing the performance system is an early part of that process.

With the new system, individual students will be tracked through their careers to ensure they’re meeting goals set through the process.



After his presentation, Karen Chessell asked about the parameters in the college and career readiness areas, which includes the number of students earning advanced diplomas, the percent passing advance placement tests and those taking the ACT or SAT college entrance exams.

Also included in that area are the number of students from a high school required to take remediation courses at a Nevada college, numbers for which aren’t available until a year after the student graduates.

“You are bringing up an important point that there is no career index,” Noonan said. “But we needed to get something to the Federal Department of Education and had to get it approved to get out of Annual Yearly Progress.”

Noonan said that the state will work on some of the shortfalls of the program as time passes.

Among the factors that just went into the ratings are how many students sit for college placement tests in their junior years and the time it takes for information about college remediation to get back to the high school.