This selection is the result of a methodology approved in the state’s Flexibility Waiver that allows the department to concentrate its support on certain Title I schools (see methodologies below). Being a part of a Priority or Focus School cohort will provide additional resources and partnerships to these schools to support the students they serve. This includes being a part of certain professional learning networks around seven key principles:
- Providing strong instructional leadership
- Improving educator effectiveness
- Redesigning learning time
- Strengthening a school instructional program
- Using data to inform instruction
- Improving the school environment (non-academic factors)
- Family and community engagement
Focus School Methodology
- The definition of Focus Schools in ESEA Flexibility is based on an equity principle, whereby schools with the largest achievement gaps between subpopulations (students with disabilities, English language learners, and economically disadvantaged students) and others will be designated.
- To identify our Focus Schools, the NECAP index scores for reading and math will be averaged across all three of these student groups for each school. The “equity index” will be produced by calculating the combined NECAP index scores for each of the designated student groups in each school, as long as the student group met the minimum group size. The simple average across the three groups will yield the equity index for each school. The average will be computed for any or all of the student groups that are present in the school.
- This equity index will then be compared to the combined statewide index for all students to frame this equity principle in terms of an achievement gap between average New Hampshire whole school student performance and the educationally disadvantaged students in each school.
- A three-year average “equity index” will then be calculated and 10 percent of the most struggling Title I schools (regarding the gap) that are not already identified as Priority Schools will be classified as Focus Schools.
2013 School Appeal Guidance
Title I Priority and Focus School Orientation Meeting (7/17/2013)
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