Brown signs Steinberg’s school accountability rewrite

Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Wednesday that will remake the state's accountability system for public schools by reducing the role of standardized testing and incorporate new college- and career-readiness measurements.

SB 1458, by Senate leader Darrell Steinberg, provides that achievement test results cannot constitute more than 40 percent of the value of the Academic Performance Index for high schools and at least 40 percent of the value of the API for primary and middle schools. Both changes would become effective for the 2014-15 school year.

The current API is failing our kids," said Steinberg in a statement last month. "I believe SB 1458 will shock the system into delivering a quality education that combines academic rigor with real world application."

Brown vetoed similar legislation last year from Steinberg and state schools chief Tom Torlakson that sought some of the same changes in the school accountability system. This time, the Senate leader said, the latest version of the bill is needed to keep up with the changing goals of education including new emphasis on critical thinking and complex problem-solving.

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