Performance Management Framework
What is the Performance Management Framework?
On September 1, 2009, D.C. Public Charter School Board (PCSB) launched its new performance management framework (PMF), which advances its already comprehensive accountability system one step further. The PMF, supported by an overhauled and upgraded information technology infrastructure, will facilitate the evaluation of charter school performance, based on common measures across all schools.
These measures include absolute student achievement as well as student growth performance measures, indicators of readiness for high school and college, and mission-specific measures at each school. Evaluations of non-academic measures, including governance, compliance with local and federal laws such as IDEA and the Constitution, and financial management will also be incorporated into the PMF. With funding from national foundations, the PCSB developed what is considered nationally to be a ground-breaking model for charter school accountability.
The PCSB’s previous accountability system was comprehensive but more focused on individualized evaluations of each charter school’s annual performance. The PMF will continue to respect schools’ individuality, while providing a more holistic look at charter school performance across schools. In addition, the PCSB will provide struggling schools with targeted support and allow high performing schools more freedom.
Some of the changes that schools will see include an annual evaluation based on a standard set of measures, the addition of a student growth measure, customized review of schools’ missions, while continuing to respect each charter school’s autonomy.
The PMF will improve the PCSB’s ability to define high, medium, low-performing and at-risk schools and to clearly communicate the expectations, rewards and consequences to schools, families and communities. This framework will allow the Board to make clear judgments about school performance and better manage the portfolio of public charter school offerings. The key objective is to drive high-achieving schools to full potential, mediocre schools to high-achieving levels, and to eliminate low-performing schools.
This new framework, which was piloted in the 2008-2009 school year on a select group of schools, will be fully implemented during the 2009-2010 school year. Results of the review have been made publicly available and provide the community with a comprehensive view of public charter schools’ academic, fiscal, and governance performance.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the new framework?
The Performance Management Framework (PMF) is an evaluation instrument based on a set of standard measures for each public charter school. It allows the PCSB to assess schools in a systematic and fair manner against each other and themselves. The framework is divided into two elements – academic and non-academic performance. There are five academic performance indicators -- Student Progress, Student Achievement, Gateway measures, Input measures, and Mission specific measures and three non-academic performance indicators – Compliance, Governance, and Fiscal Management.
When will the framework take effect?
The framework will take effect for all schools beginning in fall 2009.
Will there be a trial period before full implementation of the framework?
The PCSB piloted the new review process with 14 schools beginning in February 2009. The purpose of the pilot was to gather information only. At the end of the ‘08-‘09 school year, all schools will receive a “dry-run” of the annual academic performance review.
Will schools still have accountability plans?
No, though many goals in the current accountability plans will show up in the new school performance plans. Current accountability plans will be phased out after the ’08-’09 school year and replaced with new school performance plans aligned with the PMF.
What exactly is a school performance plan?
School performance plans contain two sets of measures for assessing school performance: (1) common measures that apply across all schools of a given type, and (2) mission-specific measures. Mission-specific measures, and the corresponding performance targets, will be developed by individual schools in consultation with PCSB, similar to the development of measures for current accountability plans.
What happens to the results that have already been reported from existing accountability plans?
For schools that are midway through the five-year charter cycle, recent data will continue to be taken into consideration during the next charter review. However, as in the past, the charter review will be based largely on a school’s current academic performance, not on where academic performance had been at a time in the past.
How will school reporting requirements change?
In the new system, most measures will be common across all schools (or at least all schools that take the DC-CAS). Because PCSB will be able to collect some information, like standardized test scores, from third-party sources, school reporting requirements for academic performance are expected to decrease. In areas of finance, compliance, and school governance, there may be additional changes to school reporting requirements.
What data are schools responsible for providing? How are data reported?
MODMS technologies are the platform/pathways to support data collection and reporting requirements. Through MODMS, schools will be responsible for providing data related to attendance, enrollment, high school credits, graduation rates, and college acceptance. Where data can be collected from third party providers, PCSB will do so, but it will be the school’s responsibility to fill in any gaps that may arise from missing or incomplete data.
Are there multiple frameworks to address the different school types?
Yes. Standard frameworks will apply to schools that offer the DC-CAS exam. Non-standard frameworks will apply to early childhood, elementary schools that end in 3rd grade, adult education/GED programs, and special education schools.
If a school has multiple campuses, does each receive a separate academic review?
Yes. Academic reviews are conducted for each campus individually; therefore, a school (LEA) with multiple campuses will receive multiple academic reviews.
Can a campus receive two academic reviews?
Yes. If a campus has students across multiple grade spans, then the campus will receive more than one academic review. For example, if the campus has grades Pk-8, then it will receive separate reviews of its early childhood population (Pk-2), elementary population (3-5) and middle school students in grades 6-8.
Will the results of the academic review be made public?
The results of the ’08-’09 “dry run” will not be made public. Starting in fall 2010, results of the academic review will be made public through PCSB’s annual School Performance Reports and on its website.
What is the relationship between the annual academic review and the NCLB report card? Will there be comparisons among all schools in Washington, DC?
The results of the academic review are not meant to replace NCLB and AYP reporting. They will form the basis for PCSB’s own decisions regarding school performance. Currently, there are no plans to include non-PCSB schools for comparison. However, where possible, PCSB will provide comparisons among all public schools in DC to provide parents and schools with the best information with which to make decisions.