2012 Growth Academic Performance Index (API)

On October 11, 2012, the California Department of Education (CDE) released the 2012 Growth Academic Performance Index (API) report. The Palo Alto Unified School District Research and Evaluation Department prepared the following analysis of the 2012 Growth API data.

2012 Growth API Results

The Public Schools Accountability Act of 1999 established the API as part of a state accountability system. The API is a numeric index between 200 and 1000, which reflects school-wide and district-wide performance on tests in the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) program and the California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE). The State Board of Education (SBE) has established an API score of 800 as the target to which all schools should aspire.

Each school has its own API Growth Target. The target depends on the school’s 2011 Base API (released in May 2012). The 2012 Growth API is compared to the 2011 Base API to determine whether schools met their targets. API Growth Targets must be met school-wide and by all student groups, including ethnic subgroups, Socioeconomically Disadvantaged (SED), English Learners (EL), and Students with Disabilities (SWD).

More detailed information about the API can be found in Appendix G.

Key findings for the 2012 Growth API include:

  • In 2012, PAUSD saw an increase in API from 926 (2011 Base API) to 934 (2012 Growth API); the highest API in the last six years.
  • In 2012, PAUSD saw an increase in API across all numerically significant subgroups (n>100), with the greatest API gains across students who are Socioeconomically Disadvantaged, Hispanic, and English Learners.
  • Over 80% (14 out of 17) of all PAUSD schools demonstrated an increase between their 2011 Base API and their 2012 Growth API. Of the three that decreased, all are above an API Growth of 948.
  • PAUSD continues to be one of the top ten K-12 school districts in the state.
  • Herbert Hoover (995), Jordan Middle School (947), Terman Middle School (960), Palo Alto High School (906) and Henry M. Gunn High School (920) are among the fifty top-performing schools in the state for their school types.
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