Schools: Schools are identified using OSSE’s School and LEA Information Management Systems (SLIMS). Schools can be located across multiple facilities. In these cases, the main facility was used for all geographic analysis.
School addresses were verified with District of Columbia Public Schools and the DC Public Charter School Board and reflect the schools’ locations as of each school year. School addresses were geocoded by the Office of the Chief Technology Officer with all District-appropriate neighborhood geographies included.
School Enrollment: OSSE Audited Enrollment, SY2013-14 through SY2020-21. The following audited enrollment business rules were applied to the audited enrollment files for SY17-18 through SY20-21: 1) The universe of DCPS students include audited UPSFF residents + Non-resident tuition paying + Residency unverified and 2) The universe of public charter students include audited UPSFF residents. The first year for at-risk designation was in SY2014-15.
School programs were collected from District of Columbia Public Schools, the DC Public Charter School Board, and My School DC
English Learner students: Only students between the ages of 3 and 21 can qualify for a English Learner designation per federal requirements.
Special education students: Only students between the ages of 3 and 21 can qualify for a special education designation per federal requirements.
At risk for academic failure students: Alternative and adult students do not qualify for the at risk status so are excluded from the at risk analysis.
Specialized program definitions
The following specialized program definitions are from My School DC or and have been agreed upon by District of Columbia Public Schools and the DC Public Charter School Board. They include the following:
- Alternative Diploma Granting: high schools that grant high school diplomas for disengaged youth who may have previously dropped out, have adjudication issues, or have had difficulties in traditional school settings.
- Application (DCPS only - sometimes referred to as "selective"): high schools that admit students based on specific criteria or eligibility requirements; only DCPS is able to operate an application school.
- Arts Integration: students study visual and/or performing arts as part of the school's mission and core academic curriculum, beyond dedicated arts periods.
- Career and Technical Education (CTE): CTE programs complete a three or four-year course sequence (in addition to their core high school classes) that includes preparation for industry-recognized certification exams and participation in work-based learning experiences.
- Dual College Enrollment: the school offers its students the opportunity to maintain their high school status while enrolling part-time or full-time at a participating colleges or universities. In addition to being able to take challenging college courses that are not offered at their home high school and to earn college credit that can be transferred to many postsecondary institutions.
- Dual Language/Language Immersion: students learn a second language beyond dedicated language periods, with the second language often serving as the medium of instruction in core academic subjects.
- International Baccalaureate (IB): school is authorized by the International Baccalaureate Organization to offer the IB Primary Years (ages 3-12), Middle Years (ages 11-16), or Diploma Program(s) (ages 16-19), or is an active candidate for such authorization. IB schools develop inquiring, knowledgeable, and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. Students who successfully complete the IB Diploma Program program are awarded an internationally recognized IB Diploma in conjunction with their local school diploma.
- Montessori: school uses a Montessori instructional approach to learning; students are grouped into mixed-age classrooms with substantial choice and independence in their learning activities.
- Single-gender Campus: School’s enrollment targets a single gender.
- STEM: integrates science, technology, engineering, and math so that each of these content areas is taught within other content areas and equally alongside literacy and composition. STEM is a part of the school's mission and core academic curriculum.
OSSE School Transparency and Reporting (STAR) Framework:
- The STAR Framework provides an overall school performance rating from 1 to a 5 stars based on an overall school performance score (1 STAR being the lowest and five the highest). STAR calculates an overall school performance rating using measures of academic achievement, student growth, school environment, English language proficiency, and graduation rates for student groups in the school. The STAR Framework first measures a school’s performance for all students for each of the applicable metrics and then measures performance for students with disabilities, students who are at-risk, English learners, and each racial/ethnic group in the school with more than ten students. Schools that serve exclusively adults, exclusively students in grades PK3 thru grade 2, schools that are new, and schools that serve small numbers of students (below the threshold for student data privacy protections) do not receive STAR ratings. In 2018, 203 out of 235 schools in DC earned a STAR rating. In 2019, 206 out of 239 schools in DC earned a STAR rating. See OSSE’s 2018 and 2019 Framework Briefs and Technical Guides for more information.
- Ward: Based on the ward in which a school is located for the given school year. In instances where a DCPS school is swinging due to modernization efforts, the ward of the swing location is used. If there were multiple school locations assigned to a single school code, the ward of the main facility was used.
- School Enrollment for STAR Analysis: OSSE Audited Enrollment, SY2017-18 and SY2018-19. The following audited enrollment business rules were applied: 1) The universe of DCPS students include audited UPSFF residents + Non-resident tuition paying + Residency unverified and 2) The universe of public charter students include audited UPSFF residents.
- Grade Bands: Enrollment is aggregated at the grade band level (PK3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Adult, Alternative, and SPED) for each school. However, not every grade band and its associated enrollment has its own Framework Score and Framework Rating. For example: if a school's enrollment spans grades 5th-12th, the school would have enrollment for three grade bands, Elementary, Middle, and High. However, the school would only be rated under two frameworks under the STAR Rating system: Middle and High. In these cases, the other grade band and its enrollment is assigned the Framework, including the Framework Rating and Score, under which those students were rated. In the case of the example, the 5th grade students were rated under the Middle Framework, but their enrollment will be included in the elementary count when the dashboard is filtered by grade band for Elementary (PK3-5).