Published Online: January 3, 2006

Arizona's State Highlights

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Vital Statistics
Public schools 1,931
Public school teachers 47,507
Pre-K-12 students 1,012,068
Annual pre-K-12 expenditures $5.9 billion
Minority students 51%
Children in poverty 20%
Students with disabilities 10.8%
English-language learners 15.4%

Summary of Grades

Arizona scores at or below average in three of the four graded categories of education policy in Quality Counts.

The state’s highest grade is for the standards and accountability section, where it receives full credit for having clear and specific standards at each grade span in the four core subjects, as determined by the American Federation of Teachers. But Arizona does not have science and social studies assessments aligned to state standards for elementary, middle, and high school students.

Arizona ranks second-to-last in the nation for its efforts to improve teacher quality. It does not require prospective high school and middle school teachers to major in the subjects they will teach. Only high school teachers are required to pass subject-knowledge tests for a beginning-teacher license. But the state does include information about teacher qualifications on its school report cards.

Arizona has room to improve on school climate measures related to school safety and parent involvement. But the state’s grade in this area receives a boost from strong policies on school choice. The strength of Arizona’s charter school law has received the highestpossible rating from the Center for Education Reform.

Arizona performs poorly on resource equity. For example, the state’s score on the coefficient-of-variation indicator indicates that there is a relatively high degree of disparity in funding levels across the state’s school districts.

State Policy Report Card
Arizona Avg. State Score
Standards and accountability B B-
Efforts to improve teacher quality D C+
School climate C+ C+
Resource equity D+ C
Overall Grade C C+
Quality Counts Grading Breakdown
Standards and accountability Points awardedPoints possible
Standards 40 40
Assessment 15.68 30
School accountability 27 30
83 100
Efforts to improve teacher quality Points awardedPoints possible
Teacher education and qualifications 22.75 35
Teacher assessment 19.5 30
Professional support and training 10.7 20
Accountability for teacher quality 10.5 15
63 100
School climate Points awardedPoints possible
Engagement 10.83 15
School safety 15 20
Parent involvement 8.7 15
Choice and autonomy 20 20
Class size 7.72 10
School size 5.5 10
School facilities 10 10
78 100
Resource equity Points awardedPoints possible
Wealth-neutrality score 28.33 33.3
McLoone Index 24 33.3
Coefficient of variation 16.67 33.3
69 100
Note: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Vol. 25, Issue 17

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