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News Item: Homepage

New California School Dashboard shows Mt. Diablo Unified students continue to graduate at a higher rate


Contact:  Ursula Kroemer Leimbach / communications@mdusd.org / mobile: (760) 705-6919


New California School Dashboard shows Mt. Diablo Unified students continue to graduate at a higher rate

Accountability tool includes several key indicators to provide greater context of student and school progress; graduation rate now at 91.2%


(CONCORD, CA – December 8, 2017) – Graduation rates continue to increase for students in the Mt. Diablo Unified School District (MDUSD) with African American students seeing the greatest uptick – 8.2% - according to data released by the California Department of Education (CDE) showing results from the new California Accountability Model and School Dashboard. The new accountability and continuous improvement system provides information about how local education agencies and schools are meeting the needs of California’s diverse student population, based on a concise set of measures.


“We are pleased to see this latest set of data on the State’s key performance Indicator categories,” said Dr. Nellie Meyer, Superintendent of MDUSD.  The categories include Suspension Rate, English Learner Progress, Graduation Rate, English Language Arts, and Mathematics.  New Indicators include Chronic Absenteeism and College and Career; these data are not currently posted by the CDE.


“The Indicators provide us important context by showing comprehensive data that helps us to not only identify our strengths and see where we can expand instructional strategies that have made a difference, but the data also help zero in on areas where students may need more intensive supports,” she added.


The Dashboard includes an Equity Report that shows the performance levels for all students on the state indicators. It also shows the total number of student groups that received a performance level for each indicator and how many of those student groups are in the two lowest performance levels (Red/Orange). The total number of student groups may vary due to the number of grade levels included within each indicator.


Highlights include:

  • Increased graduation rate up .9% to 91.2% overall; the 4th year in a row the rate has increased:
    • English learners’ growth increased by 3.7%
    • African American student growth increased by 8.2%
    • Asian student growth increased by 4.8%
    • Hispanic student growth increased by 1.6%
  • Decreased suspension rate
    • English learners’ rate decreased .5%
    • Homeless student rate decreased 2.3%
    • Socioeconomically challenged student rate decreased .6%
  • Gains in English Language Arts
    • Hispanic student growth increased by 1.3%
    • Caucasian student growth increased by 1.6%
  • Gains in Mathematics
    • Homeless student growth increased by 4.3%
    • Filipino student growth increased by 2.3%


Areas of improvement include:

  • Services to students with disabilities – MDUSD has a high population of students who are considered medically fragile or are high needs and are not on the traditional graduation trajectory
  • African American and Hispanic students – an achievement gap remains between students of color and their Caucasian counterparts


MDUSD was also found to have again met all local indicators, based on information that regional educational agencies, such as county offices of education, collect locally.


The Dashboard supports the state’s Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), which gives districts and schools more flexibility in using state resources as outlined in each school district’s Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP). Districts and schools have access to the information they need to make the best local decisions about the education of children. New information will help principals, teachers, parents and community members pinpoint specific areas where schools are underperforming and need help. It will also help identify schools that are excelling and can help others by sharing their methods and practices.


In contrast to California’s previous accountability system, which was based solely on annual standardized test scores, the School Dashboard considers several key indicators.  Collectively, these indicators provide much greater context to how students and schools are doing.


State Indicators

  • Academic Indicator (reported separately for English language arts and mathematics assessments)
  • English Learner Progress
  • Chronic Absenteeism
  • Graduation Rate
  • Suspension Rate
  • College/Career Readiness (includes Grade 11 assessment results)

Local Indicators

  • Basic Services and School Conditions
  • Implementation of State Academic Standards
  • Parent Engagement
  • School Climate


Instead of numeric scores and rankings, the California School Dashboard assigns colored performance levels.  These performance levels are calculated based on how current performance compares to past performance.

The state goal for all indicators is to reach the green performance level. 

The performance level (color) is not included when there are less than 30 students in any year used to calculate status and change. An N/A means that data are not currently available.


As more indicators come online, the data will be added to the Dashboard. Future versions of the Dashboard will be published annually; its design and features will be changed over time based on user feedback. 


Under California’s LCFF, County Offices of Education, the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence (CCEE), and the CDE have specific responsibilities for providing assistance to school districts (considered by the state to be ‘local agencies’) to develop and implement improvement strategies for student groups which did not grow beyond the “Red” level for two consecutive years. 


Of the 18 districts in Contra Costa County, nine of them, including MDUSD, had one or more groups meeting this criteria, and, as such, are eligible to receive support, including technical assistance, professional development or other support to help the student groups progress.  MDUSD will receive support for reducing suspensions for African American, foster youth and homeless students, as well as support for improving achievement among these same student groups.


California School Dashboard Report 
The Dashboard contains reports that display the performance of local educational agencies (LEAs), schools, and student groups on a set of state and local measures to assist in identifying strengths, weaknesses, and areas in need of improvement.


California Model Five-by-Five Grid Placement Reports
The new accountability and continuous improvement system is based on a five-by-five colored table that produces 25 results using five colors. The reports display the schools' (by district) and student groups' placement on the five-by-five colored tables.



Source: Mt. Diablo Unified School District

Source: Association of California School Administrators (ACSA)


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About the Mt. Diablo Unified School District

Mt. Diablo Unified, located in Contra Costa County, is honored to serve approximately 32,000 students at one of more than 50 school sites in the cities of Clayton, Concord, and Pleasant Hill; portions of Martinez, Pittsburg, and Walnut Creek; and the unincorporated areas of Bay Point, Lafayette, and Pacheco. As part of a richly diverse community, MDUSD families represent numerous ethnic groups, speaking over 50 languages and dialects. MDUSD offers award-winning and innovative programs in Career Technical Education; Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM); extensive visual and performing arts programs; and rich foreign language and dual immersion offerings.  MDUSD is pleased to have expanded its middle college program, College Now, and opened its first International Baccalaureate program and three new regional magnet schools in 2017.  Learn more athttp://www.mdusd.org/.

Posted by: Debbie Maher, District Admin, Mt. Diablo Unified School District Published:12/8/17
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