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Policymakers' Guide to Growth Models for School Accountability: How Do Accountability Models Differ?

Abstract

"The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) is working to respond to the growing interest in the
use of growth models for school accountability. While growth models have been used for decades in
academic research and program evaluation, now a wide cross section of policymakers at local, state, and
national levels are inquiring about the potential for growth models to provide an alternative or useful
addition to the accountability systems that each state is implementing under the requirements of the No
Child Left Behind (NCLB) act. Policymakers and educational leaders are also seeking more information
as to the basic differences between various types of growth models and the essential assessments, data,
and reporting systems that are needed to implement them. The purpose of this paper is to define the key
differences between the statistical models that can be used for school accountability and to examine the
various factors important in making decisions about incorporating a growth model into an accountability
system. The present paper is one of several efforts by CCSSO to provide information to policymakers and
education leaders interested in making informed decisions about growth models for accountability."

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