Palo Alto Unified School District’s 2013 Growth API

On August 29, 2013, the California Department of Education (CDE) released the 2013 Growth Academic Performance Index (API)report.  The Palo Alto Unified School District Research, Evaluation and Assessment Department prepared the following analysis of the 2013 Growth API data for your review.

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, and the target depends on the school’s 2012 Base API.  The 2013 Growth API is compared to the 2012 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 and Socio-economically Disadvantaged, English Language Learners, and Students with Disabilities.

PAUSD is proud of the significant growth demonstrated in the Socio-economically Disadvantaged, African American, and Students with Disabilities subgroups.  These groups increased well above the state level of achievement. Key findings for the 2013 Growth API include:

o   In 2013, PAUSD saw a slight decrease in API from 933 (2012 Base API) to 932 (2013 Growth API), which mirrors the state and county changes.

o   In 2013, PAUSD saw the greatest API gains across the sub groups representing students who are Socio-economically Disadvantaged, African-American and Students with Disabilities.

o   In 2013, all of PAUSD’s underrepresented subgroups outperformed their peers across the state.

o   Seven PAUSD schools demonstrated an increase between their 2012 Base API and their 2013 Growth API, with the greatest gain at Ohlone Elementary, up 26 API points. 

o   Terman Middle School and JLS Middle School posted a record high API this year and are in the top 50 Middle Schools Statewide.

o   Gunn and Palo Alto High Schools continue in the top 50 High Schools Statewide list.

o   PAUSD continues to be one of the top ten K-12 school districts in the state.

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