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The legislature finds that the purpose of Washington's accountability system is to improve student learning and student achievement of the essential academic learning requirement standards so that each individual student will be given the opportunity to become a responsible citizen and successfully live, learn, and work in the twenty-first century. To achieve this purpose, the accountability system should be based on student achievement and continuous improvement at all levels of Washington's education system and on a fundamental principle that all public school students have access to curriculum and instruction that is aligned to the standards.
The legislature further finds that the accountability system should rely on local responsibility and leadership. Districts and schools should be expected to improve and be evaluated based on their improvement over time. Districts should recognize exceptional progress and work closely with schools needing assistance.
The legislature further finds that the accountability system must be simple to use and understand. Consequences must be predictable and fair. Differences among students, schools, and districts should be recognized and respected as the system is implemented. There should be a balance of each student's right to privacy and the public's right to know the overall levels of learning and achievement at the school, district, and state levels. In addition, the accountability system should be continuously reviewed and improved as more is learned about how schools operate to meet the learning needs of Washington's students.
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