The latest federal legislation about school accountability is the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), signed into law in 2015. Under ESSA, each state is required to submit a plan detailing how the law will be implemented, including how it will hold schools accountable for student performance. Some parts of the accountability system are required by law--for example, all high schools, nationwide, are accountable for their graduation rate. The law also allows states to choose components of the accountability system that are important to its students and stakeholders.
Maryland created its accountability system from January 2017 through June 2018. The State Board of Education, Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) staff, superintendents, principals, teachers, parents, community leaders, advocacy groups, and other stakeholders around the State worked together to create an accountability system that measured relevant, actionable aspects of school performance. The State plan was approved by the U.S. Department of Education in early 2018.
The Maryland accountability system includes multiple ways to describe student and school performance. The major components of the accountability system are called "indicators." The indicators are: Academic Achievement, Academic Progress, Progress in Achieving English Language Proficiency, and School Quality and Student Success at the Elementary and Middle School Levels; Academic Achievement, Graduation Rate, Progress in Achieving English Language Proficiency, Readiness for Postsecondary Success, and School Quality and Student Success at the High School Level.