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Accountability Redesign

Transforming Accountability at CPS

CPS has adopted a new policy that reimagines the District's approach to school accountability. The Continuous Improvement and Data Transparency Policy will be fully implemented by the Fall of 2025.

Beginning in 2019, CPS embarked on an ambitious process to redesign the District's school accountability policy. In April 2023, CPS adopted a new policy for evaluating school performance, built from the ground up using stakeholder feedback, advice, and participation.

Throughout this initiative, the District engaged over 20,000 stakeholders and formed a diverse advisory group to reimagine our approach to accountability. This new approach replaces the School Quality Rating Policy (SQRP), ends school rankings from CPS, and will promote equity and excellence in our schools. Now, the District is working to implement the policy for the 2024-25 school year.

What Accountability Means at CPS

 

School accountability is the idea of holding schools and districts responsible for student learning. Systems that support school accountability provide information on school performance and quality.

The New Accountability Policy

The Continuous Improvement and Data Transparency Policy (CIDT) sets out a systematic means for measuring a school’s performance and identifying schools in need of support. It replaces the School Quality Rating Policy (SQRP) and improves on many aspects of its predecessor.

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Our Process of Change

Engagement

As part of the accountability redesign process, CPS engaged more than 20,000 stakeholders to reimagine our approach to accountability.

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Development

During the development stage of the process, CPS set out to redefine and redesign the District’s existing accountability system.

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Implementation

As part of passing the new CIDT policy in April 2023, the Board of Education and the District laid out a timeline for fully implementing the new policy.

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Accountability Redesign Timeline

In 2019, the District decided to redesign its school accountability system to be more equitable, stakeholder-driven, and better reflect the realities of CPS' many great schools.

 Responding to a Need

CPS is committed to measuring student and school performance, and the district's previous school accountability system, School Quality Rating Policy (SQRP), was a national exemplar about how to use data to inform school communities. However, we heard feedback from our community that SQRP can be improved upon to better account for systemic inequities and optimized to support critical aspects of the district's work. In response, the district partnered with our communities to develop a new system to better serve school communities and the district.

 Engaging Our Stakeholders

In accordance with CPS’ Core Values of Equity, Integrity, and Transparency, the District assembled a diverse group of stakeholders and experts into an Accountability Redesign Advisory Group. The Advisory Group was tasked with learning about accountability best practices, hearing potential solutions to key questions about accountability design, processing stakeholder feedback, and synthesizing all of this information into clear recommendations for the District.

 Engaging Our Communities

The accountability redesign work that took place between 2019 and 2023 engaged tens of thousands of stakeholders, consulted with education experts, and ultimately reimagined the District’s approach to accountability. 

 Creating a New Approach to Accountability

The Continuous Improvement and Data Transparency policy that has replaced SQRP improves on many aspects of its predecessor by being built from the ground up using stakeholder feedback, advice, and participation.

 Implementing the New Policy

As a part of passing the new CIDT policy in April of 2023, the Board of Education and the District laid out a timeline for fully implementing the new policy. This implementation process will continue to engage stakeholders’ voices, build alignment and cohesion in the district, and create learning materials to maintain transparency and guide the transition from SQRP to CIDT.

Contact

If you have questions or wish to provide feedback, please email us at schoolmeasurement@cps.edu.