According to GISD, Texas’ A-F rating system relies on the STAAR standardized test and only measures a small portion of the curriculum while providing information on student groups. District officials say the ratings leave out important aspects of a student’s educational journey.
GISD Superintendent Fred Brent said the state’s guidelines do not measure most of what a student learns in school, the standards of the community or the attainment of the GISD learner profile, which highlights the qualities and characteristics a graduate of the school district should possess.
“We feel like we should be accountable to our community,” Brent said.
The learner profile was developed over the course of more than a year with a curriculum audit and input from the community about what traits Georgetown values in students.
“The community told us what they value when we developed the learner profile and the strategic plan,” said district Chief Communications Officer Suzanne Marchman. “We feel the state accountability system doesn’t do a good job of measuring that.”
In 2017, GISD joined 43 districts across the state to be part of the Texas Performance Assessment Consortium pilot group of districts. The group aims to develop measures and assessments that would enable wider use of community-based accountability.
“This is much more difficult to just run kids thorough a testing system,” Brent said. “We’re actually doing the work the community wants us to do.”
In May, district officials hosted three summits to collect community input on what values and skills community members hope to see from students in the district. A fourth summit is scheduled for 6-8 p.m. April 5 in the Eagle Innovation Center at Georgetown High School.