The accountability system holds schools accountable through annual public reporting and classification of schools. The expectation is that the model will be used to inform school leaders, teachers, parents and the public as to how schools are progressing. With its emphasis on continuous improvement, it sets a high bar for ongoing reflection and goal setting.
What Is The School Performance Index?
South Dakota’s accountability system centers around a 100-point index, called the School Performance Index, or SPI. The SPI consists of key indicators of performance. A numeric value is assigned to each of the indicators. These values are added to create a total SPI score out of 100 points. Each public school in the state receives a SPI score, with limited exceptions due to school size and/or mission.
Two distinct indexes are used: 1) one for high school accountability, and 2) one for elementary and middle school accountability. The key indicators on the indexes will be phased in over the next several years.
Classification Of Schools
Based on SPI scores, the Department of Education classifies schools as follows:
• Exemplary schools = SPI score at or above the top 5 percent of schools
• Status schools = SPI score at or above the top 10 percent (minus Exemplary schools)
• Progressing schools = SPI score less than top 10 percent and greater than bottom 5 percent
• Priority schools =
- SPI score at or below the bottom 5 percent OR
- Title I eligible high school with graduation rate below 60 percent for last two years
• Focus schools are classified based on specific SPI indicators, as they relate to the performance of a school’s Gap Group. This classification applies only to Title I schools.
• Certain schools with very small or unique student populations may not receive an SPI score.