Last week, the State Superintendent of Schools released the 2004 Academic Performance Index Base Report.
The Index (API) is the cornerstone of the Public Schools Accountability Act of 1999, as it measures the academic performance and progress of schools.
The state identifies schools that have an API of 800 or higher as “excellent,” and once again the majority of schools in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District received a rating of excellent.
According to SMMUSD official Hank Harris, “A closely monitored aspect of the spring API Base Report is the posting of two comparative pieces of data. Statewide Rank ranks all California public schools and gives them a score of 1 through 10, with 10 a top score. Similar Schools Rank is a more complex process. The state links each individual school with ninety-nine other ‘similar schools,’ based upon the following school characteristics: mobility, ethnic breakdown, socioeconomic status, teacher qualifications, English learner population, class size, and calendar-type. After sorting schools into like-groups, the state then compares each school against its peer schools and gives it a score of 1 through 10.”
Eighty percent of the API-reporting schools in the Santa Monica-Malibu School District scored an 8 or above on the Statewide Rankings, including elementary schools Juan Cabrillo, Franklin, Grant, McKinley, Pt. Dume, Roosevelt, and Webster. Local secondary schools, Lincoln Middle School, Malibu High School, and Santa Monica High School all scored at 8 or above. In addition, Lincoln Middle School and Malibu High School were both rated as “10/10” schools, meaning that their 2003-04 scores place them in the top tier statewide, as well as in the top tier within their peer group.
John Deasy, Superintendent of the Santa Monica-Unified School District, called this accomplishment “extraordinary,” noting, “the schools in our two communities continue to forge ahead toward excellence for all students. This is truly a proud moment for all of us… This high quality student achievement is a source of pride for this community which so strongly supports its schools. This simply would not be possible without the unprecedented support of our cities and our community members.”
Roosevelt Elementary School, John Adams Middle School, and Santa Monica High School all gained ground in both Statewide rankings and Similar Schools rankings.
Roosevelt raised its ranking from “9/5” (where 9 is the Statewide rank and 5 is the Similar Schools rank) last year to “10/8” this year. John Adams and Samohi also had double gains.In all, 12 of the district’s 14 API-reporting schools maintained or increased their statewide ranking, and eleven maintained or increased their similar schools ranking.