Working paper

The Properties of Non-Academic School Performance Measures

Rachel S. White
University of Tennessee–Knoxville.
Morgan Polikoff
University of Southern California


Although there is a robust body of literature studying targets for academic indicators within school quality systems few studies explore target setting for non-academic indicators. Focusing on elementary schools within the CORE districts, we investigate how moving performance targets for non-academic indicators affects school quality ratings. We ask: (1) How does school performance on CORE’s school quality improvement measures vary across schools and over time?; and (2) How does the setting of targets on CORE’s non-academic indicators at various levels impact the number and types of schools that make progress toward or reach the target? We find that non-academic measures of school quality are less stable over time than static academic achievement measures, school demographics are not consistently associated with schools’ ratings on non-academic measures, and schools’ ratings on non-academic measures of school quality are sensitive to even very small changes in rating category thresholds.

Suggested citationWhite, R., & Polikoff, M. (2019, May). The properties of non-academic school performance measures [Working paper]. Policy Analysis for California Education.