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Report Finds One-Third of Schools and Districts Fail to Make Adequate Yearly Progress

report finds one

About 33 percent of the nation’s schools did not make adequate yearly progress (AYP) in 2008–09 school year, according to a recently released report from the Center on Education Policy (CEP). As shown in the chart to the right, this marks a slight improvement from the year before, but trails the 2006–07 school year when 28 percent of schools failed to make AYP. Meanwhile, the report finds that the percentage of school districts not making AYP have risen steadily from 29 percent during the 2005–06 school year to 36 percent in the 2008–09 school year.

Under the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), schools and districts are required to improve student achievement as measured by standardized state tests. The report, How Many Schools and Districts Have Not Made Adequately Yearly Progress?: Four Year Trends, examines trends in all fifty states and Washington, DC, from the 2005–06 school year to the 2008–09 school year, the most recent year that the data is available.

CEP notes the shortcomings of the AYP-based accountability system in identifying schools with the greatest academic needs and recommends allowing states that have adopted the common core state standards and assessments to move away from AYP requirements and experiment with different accountability systems. The study also suggests that reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, currently known as NCLB, would provide an opportunity to rethink and replace the AYP-based system.

To read the full report, visit

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