Performance Targets

Since 2012, Georgia has had a waiver from the requirements of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). In this waiver, Georgia set Statewide and Subgroup Performance Targets for its statewide assessments and four-year cohort graduation rate. The targets were originally set for the 2011-2012 school year, and these targets were in effect for three years. In its 2015 waiver renewal, Georgia reset Performance Targets for both the graduation rate and statewide assessments, largely due to the transition to the Georgia Milestones Assessment System. As such, the targets for the 2014-2015 school year on the Report Card reflect the new targets.


These targets provide incentives for continual and incremental growth of both all students and specific subgroups. As had been done since 2011-2012, the state continued the use of Performance Flags, displayed in green, yellow, and red, to monitor performance and ensure schools receive detailed feedback on each subgroup’s performance on statewide assessments. The targets were calculated for each subject area on the Georgia Milestones End-of-Grade (EOG) and each course on End-of-Course (EOC) assessments. Across all grades and courses, students taking the Georgia Alternative Assessment (GAA), which is provided to students with the most significant cognitive disabilities and cannot participate in the general assessment program even with maximum accommodates, are also included in the appropriate grade or course. An important distinction from previous Performance Targets is that, instead of a rate of students at proficiency or higher, the new formula uses a weighted proficiency rate that awards points across the following three performance levels:


·         Developing Learners are awarded 0.5 points for demonstrating partial proficiency,

·         Proficient Learners are awarded 1.0 points for demonstrating proficiency, and

·         Distinguished Learners are awarded 1.5 points for demonstrating advanced proficiency.


The weighted proficiency rate is calculated using the following formula:




This weighted proficiency rate is then used in the same target formula used in the 2012 ESEA waiver, outlined below:



The outcome of this formula is the required annual growth in the proficiency rate from the 2015 weighted proficiency rate for each subgroup. The state performance target is set using All Students with the goal of decreasing the percent of students who are not proficient by 50% by 2020-2021. The state performance target provides a statewide commitment to high achievement across all subgroups and for all students. Using the same methodology for setting the state performance target, individual subgroup performance targets have been set for each content area, statewide. The formula counts only students who were enrolled in the school for the "Full Academic Year" (FAY), which is defined as at least 65% of the school year (or, in the case of a high school block schedule, 65% of the course days).


The use of subgroup performance targets allows Georgia to recognize the current level of achievement for subgroups and differentiate annual growth for subgroups that need to make the most gains. While Georgia’s ultimate goal is to achieve 100% of students attaining proficiency, flexibility provided through this waiver allowed Georgia to reset Performance Targets for each subgroup. In addition to performance, the flags take into account whether the subgroups met the 95% participation rate in state assessments, as required in ESEA. The flags are awarded based upon the following legend:



For more detailed information on the Georgia’s 2015 ESEA waiver and performance flags, click here for Georgia’s approved waiver application.



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