California’s State Highlights

January 03, 2006 2 min read
Vital Statistics
Public schools 9,222
Public school teachers 304,311
Pre-K-12 students 6,413,862
Annual pre-K-12 expenditures $48 billion
Minority students 65%
Children in poverty 19%
Students with disabilities 10.6%
English-language learners 24.9%

Summary of Grades

California scores above average in three of the four graded policy categories in Quality Counts.

In standards and accountability, the state’s standards for the four core content areas across all grade spans receive high marks from the American Federation of Teachers. But the state does not have social studies assessments aligned to state standards at the elementary school level.

The state’s strongest efforts in teacher quality are related to the professional support it provides new teachers and policies that hold schools and teacher-preparation institutions accountable for teacher quality. For example, California is one of only 15 states that require and finance mentoring for new teachers. The state also includes teacher-qualification data on its school report cards. But California does not use performance assessments to determine whether teachers are ready to move to a more advanced level of certification.

California scores points in school climate for having a class-sizereduction program. However, compared with other states, more of California’s students still attend larger schools. The state also shows room for improvement on some measures of parent involvement.

In resource equity, California scores well on the wealth-neutrality measure, indicating that per pupil funding levels are relatively similar in the state’s wealthier and poorer districts.

State Policy Report Card
California Avg. State Score
Standards and accountability B+ B-
Efforts to improve teacher quality B- C+
School climate C C+
Resource equity B- C
Overall Grade B- C+
Quality Counts Grading Breakdown
Standards and accountability Points awardedPoints possible
Standards 40 40
Assessment 21.93 30
School accountability 27 30
89 100
Efforts to improve teacher quality Points awardedPoints possible
Teacher education and qualifications 24.06 35
Teacher assessment 24 30
Professional support and training 19.55 20
Accountability for teacher quality 14.55 15
82 100
School climate Points awardedPoints possible
Engagement 11 15
School safety 15.75 20
Parent involvement 10.2 15
Choice and autonomy 16 20
Class size 9.6 10
School size 5 10
School facilities 7.5 10
75 100
Resource equity Points awardedPoints possible
Wealth-neutrality score 30.67 33.3
McLoone Index 25 33.3
Coefficient of variation 25 33.3
81 100

Note: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Grading Curve A (93-100), A- (90-92), B+ (87-89), B (83-86), B- (80-82), C+ (77-79), C (73-76), C- (70-72), D+ (67-69), D (63-66), D- (60-62), F (0-59)