3college-ready graduates (per the standards of the Texas Education Agency) has doubled from 20% to 40%
. Yet significant work remains. Dallas ISD students scored 13% below statewide achievement on 2011 standardized tests and only 10% of our studentsscored at the commended level
. The District’s size (157,575 students in Pre-K through 12
grade) and the non-academic challengesthat burden our students (87.1% are economically disadvantaged and 66.4% meet the state’s definition of being at-risk of schoolfailure or dropping out) are consistent impediments to greater, faster progress.In an effort to accelerate success, Dallas ISD established a bold reform agenda --
– that will improve student performance, close a long-standing achievement gap for African American, Hispanic, economically disadvantaged and specialeducation students, and significantly increase personalized learning and college and career readiness for all students. The rapidattainment of these student-centric outcomes is jeopardized, however, by three institutional challenges. 1)
An insufficient number of proficient and highly qualified teachers
. This is a challenge in all Dallas ISD schools but particularly in under-performing feeder patterns where the majority of students are African American or Hispanic and economically disadvantaged. However, maximizing theeffectiveness of Dallas ISD’s teaching corps is not possible within the current evaluation and compensation system, which isdisconnected from what we value most – well-prepared students. 2)
A non-existent system for fostering instructional leadership
.Campus staffing patterns do not enable the identification or promotion of teacher leaders who can share their proven instructional practices with their peers. Also, because Dallas ISD does not reward their greater capacities with differentiated compensation, we losemany of our excellent educators to other districts. 3)
Technology infrastructure that is ten years out of date.
Maximizing theeffectiveness of all Dallas ISD teachers will require universal access to the 21
century learning tools that advance personalizedlearning and college and career readiness. Unfortunately, the District has a dated and inefficient technology infrastructure, too fewdigital learning resources in the classroom, and minimal professional development to enable optimal use of the resources that exist.In addition to offering a well-defined pathway to educational excellence for all Dallas ISD students, Destination 2020 is
Texas Education Agency. 201l and 2007 Academic Excellence Indicator System, District Performance Ratings.www.tea.state.tx.us.
Texas Education Agency. 2010-11 Academic Excellence Indicator System.www.tea.state.tx.us.