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No Child Left Behind / Adequate Yearly Progress


Frequently Asked Questions About Adequate Yearly Progress, Academic Early Warning Status, and Academic Watch Status



question icon What is AYP?

AYP stands for adequate yearly progress. It represents the annual academic performance targets in reading and math that the State, school districts, and schools must reach to be considered on track for 100% proficiency by school year 2013-14.

question icon Why does AYP exist?

As required by the Federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, Sec. 1111 (b)(F), each state shall establish a timeline for adequate yearly progress. The timeline shall ensure that not later than 12 years after the 2001-2002 school year, all students in each group described in subparagraph (C)(v) will meet or exceed the State's standards.

question icon Who has to make AYP?

The State, Districts, and Schools must make AYP. All students and subgroups of 45 or more students are calculated for AYP.

The subgroups required by NCLB are:

Racial/Ethnic: Whites, Blacks, Hispanics, Native American, Asian/Pacific Islander, and multi_ethnic; Economically Disadvantaged: Students on free or reduced lunch; Students with Disabilities: Students with IEPs; and Limited English Proficient students.

question icon Can a given student be included in more than one subgroup?

Yes. For example, a white student who also receives free or reduced-price lunch would be counted in both categories.

question icon Do private schools or institutions have to make AYP?

No. However, if an LEA has Title I-funded private schools or institutions within its boundaries, the LEA must establish with them the criteria that will be used to annually evaluate the impact of the services that are delivered.

question icon What happens if a Title I school or a school district doesn’t make AYP?

Nothing after one year. However, LEAs must place Title I schools that fail to make AYP for two consecutive years on School Improvement. In year one of School Improvement, the school must develop an improvement plan and offer school choice. In year two, the school must offer supplemental services in addition to school choice. In year three, the school district must implement one or more of a list of corrective actions.

question icon How were the "starting points" and performance targets established?

The NCLB Act is very prescriptive with regard to how this is to be done – very little flexibility is afforded to states. The same process was used to establish starting points for reading and math.

To determine the starting points for reading and mathematics, the 2002 assessment data was analyzed. First, the percent proficient in the school enrolling the 20th percentile of students was determined for reading and math. The percent proficient for reading and math was 40.86% and 39.68%, respectively.

Second, the percent proficient of the lowest performing subgroup in reading was determined to be 24.1%for limited English proficient students. For math, the percent proficient of the lowest performing subgroup was determined to be 30.3% for individuals with disabilities. The starting points required under NCLB are the higher of the values of the two methods. Therefore, the State Board of Education in 2002 adopted use of the second methodology and in early 2003 adopted 40% proficient as the starting points for all subgroups and schools for both reading and mathematics.
The State’s annual measurable objectives are the same throughout the State for each public school, each district, and each subgroup of students.

question icon What are the proficiency targets for reading and math over the next twelve years?

A proficiency target chart has been sent to all school districts. *See Below

question icon What assessment results will be considered in making AYP determinations?

The reading and mathematics results from ISAT, PSAE, IMAGE, and IAA. ISBE is continuing to develop assessment to replace the IMAGE and IAA.

question icon How how does a school make AYP in a given school year under the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) requirements?


Three conditions are required for making AYP in a given school year:
  1. At least 95 percent of students are tested for reading and mathematics, for all students and for all subgroups of 45 or more students.
  2. At least meet the minimum annual target, for Meeting/Exceeding Standards for reading and mathematics for all groups and all subgroups of 45 or more students.
  3. At least meet the minimum annual target for attendance rate for elementary and middle schools or graduation rate for high schools, as depicted in the charts below:
Approved Annual Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) Targets for Attendance Rates
Illinois Public Elementary and Middle Schools

Approved Annual AYP Targets for Attendance Rates - Illinois Public Elementary and Middle Schools


Approved Annual Adequate Yearly Progress Targets for Graduation Rate
Illinois Public High Schools
Approved Annual AYP Targets for Graduation Rate Illinois Public High Schools


question icon What are the minimum annual targets for Meeting/ Exceeding Standards for reading and mathematics for all groups and subgroups by year?

question icon Where can I find a description of state academic accountability requirements?

These requirements are addressed in Section 5/2-3.25 (Standards for schools) of the School Code.In the spring 2003 session of the General Assembly, Senate Bill 878 passed, which aligns state and federal accountability requirements. The full text of the signed Public Act 093-0470 can be found at http://www.legis.state.il.us/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp

question icon What are the determining factors for placing a school in Academic Early Warning Status (AEWS)?

Schools that do not make AYP for two consecutive years are placed in Academic Early Warning Status (AEWS).

question icon What is the safe harbor provision?

The State, school districts, schools, and each subgroup of 45 or more students must reach the performance targets for increasing proficiency in reading and math to make AYP. However, there is an exception to that requirement. The State, school districts and schools may still make AYP if each subgroup that fails to reach its proficiency performance targets reduces its percentage of students not meeting standards by 10% of the previous year's percentage, plus the subgroup must meet the attendance rate or graduation rate targets.

question icon How do schools that are currently in AEWS get removed from this status?

AEWS schools that make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) for two consecutive years are removed from AEWS.

question icon What are the determining factors for placing a school in Academic Watch Status (AWS)?

Schools that do not make AYP for four consecutive years are placed in Academic Watch Status.

question icon How do schools that are currently in Academic Watch Status (AWS) get removed from this status?

AWS Schools that make AYP for two consecutive years are removed from AWS.

question icon When will schools be notified of their AEWS or AWS status?

The State Board of Education adopts an official status list for each category after School and District Report Cards are published (on or after November 1).

question icon Where can I find information on federal accountability requirements?

The law, federal regulations and guidance related to NCLB can be found at http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/oese/legislation.html. More specifics regarding Choice and Supplemental Educational Services can be found at http://www2.ed.gov/parents/schools/choice/choice.html. Frequently Asked Questions regarding the federal requirements can be found at http://www2.ed.gov/nclb/choice/schools/edpicks.jhtml?src=ln.

question icon What are the determining factors for placing a school in federal School Improvement Status?

Federal school improvement status designations apply only to Title I schools. Title I schools that do not make AYP for two consecutive years are placed in School Improvement Status and must offer Choice. Title I schools that do not make AYP for three consecutive years must offer both Choice and Supplemental Educational Services (SES). If those schools miss making AYP for a fourth consecutive year, they are designated as being in Corrective Action and must choose among several remediation strategies outlined in federal law. A fifth year of missing AYP results in a restructuring planning year and then a sixth year of missing AYP requires that the restructuring plan be implemented.A list of currently approved SES providers can be found at http://www.isbe.net/ses/html/service_providers.htm

question icon How do Title I schools that are currently in School Improvement Status get removed from this status?

Schools in School Improvement that make AYP for two consecutive years are removed from School Improvement Status.

question icon When will schools be notified of their federal School Improvement Status?

Schools will be notified within 2 weeks of the start of school in most districts. Schools that may have to offer choice or SES services will receive a courtesy notification based on ISBE’s analysis of their preliminary test data.

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