Glossary of Terms, 2016-17

Division of Research and Analysis


Additional Information on Campus and District Rates
Table 1 of campus and district annual dropout and longitudinal pages shows rates calculated for federal accountability purposes. A student in a Texas Juvenile Justice Department facility or residential treatment facility served by a Texas public school district, as described in Texas Education Code (TEC) 39.053(g-3) or 39.055, is excluded from campus and district annual dropout and longitudinal rate calculations in Table 1.

Table 2 of campus and district annual dropout and longitudinal pages shows rates with statutory exclusions applied for state accountability. Under TEC, a student who meets one or more of the following criteria is excluded from campus and district rate calculations used for state accountability purposes.

  • Under TEC 39.053(g-1), a student who meets at least one of the following criteria is excluded from campus and district annual dropout and longitudinal rate calculations: (a) a student who is ordered by a court to attend a high school equivalency certificate program but has not earned a high school equivalency certificate; (b) a student previously reported to the state as a dropout; (c) a student in attendance but who is not in membership for purposes of average daily attendance (i.e., students for whom school districts are not receiving state Foundation School Program [FSP] funds); (d) a student whose initial enrollment in a school in the United States in Grades 7 through 12 was as an unschooled refugee or asylee as defined by TEC 39.027(a-1); (e) a student who is in the district exclusively as a function of having been detained at a county detention facility but is otherwise not a student of the district, or a student who is being provided services by an open-enrollment charter school exclusively as the result of having been detained at the facility; or (f) a student who is incarcerated in a state jail or federal penitentiary as an adult or as a person certified to stand trial as an adult.
  • Under TEC 39.053(g-2), a student who (a) is at least 18 years of age as of September 1 and has satisfied the credit requirements for high school graduation; (b) has not completed his or her individualized education program (IEP); and (c) is enrolled and receiving IEP services is excluded from longitudinal rate calculations.
  • Under TEC 39.053(g-3), the dropout record for a student who fails to enroll in school after leaving a residential treatment facility or a pre- or post-adjudication facility is not attributed to the district serving the facility.
  • Under TEC 39.055, a student in a Texas Juvenile Justice Department facility or residential treatment facility served by a Texas public school district is excluded from campus and district rates.

At-Risk
A student identified as at-risk of dropping out of school is one who is under age 26 and who meets one or more of the following criteria:

  • is in prekindergarten, kindergarten, or Grades 1, 2, or 3 and did not perform satisfactorily on a readiness test or assessment instrument administered during the current school year;
  • is in Grades 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, or 12 and did not maintain an average equivalent to 70 on a scale of 100 in two or more subjects in the foundation curriculum (language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies) during a semester in the preceding or current school year or is not maintaining such an average in two or more subjects in the foundation curriculum in the current semester;
  • was not advanced from one grade level to the next for one or more school years;
  • did not perform satisfactorily on an assessment instrument administered to the student under Texas Education Code (TEC) Subchapter B, Chapter 39, and who has not in the previous or current school year subsequently performed on that instrument or another appropriate instrument at a level equal to at least 110 percent of the level of satisfactory performance on that instrument;
  • is pregnant or is a parent;
  • has been placed in an alternative education program in accordance with TEC 37.006 during the preceding or current school year;
  • has been expelled in accordance with TEC 37.007 during the preceding or current school year;
  • is currently on parole, probation, deferred prosecution or other conditional release;
  • was previously reported through PEIMS to have dropped out of school;
  • is a student of limited English proficiency, as defined by TEC 29.052;
  • is in the custody or care of the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services or has, during the current school year, been referred to the department by a school official, officer of the juvenile court, or law enforcement official;
  • is homeless, as defined by 42 U.S.C. Section 11302, and its subsequent amendments; or
  • resided in the preceding school year or resides in the current school year in a residential placement facility in the district, including a detention facility, substance abuse treatment facility, emergency shelter, psychiatric hospital, halfway house, or foster group home.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Bilingual or English as a Second Language (ESL)
Bilingual indicates that the student is participating in a state-approved bilingual education program. The program must be a full-time program that provides dual-language instruction through the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills in the content areas (mathematics, science, health, and social studies) in the primary language of English language learners (ELL). In addition, the program must provide for a carefully structured and sequenced mastery of English cognitive academic language development. English as a second language (ESL) indicates that a student is participating in a state-approved ESL program. An ESL program in Grade 8 and below is a program of intensive instruction in English from teachers either certified or endorsed in ESL who use second language acquisition information to teach ELL students the ESL TEKS. An ESL program in Grades 9-12 is a program of intensive instruction in English from teachers trained in recognizing and dealing with language differences.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Career and Technical Education (CTE)
A student enrolled in a state-approved CTE program as a participant in the district's career and technical coherent sequence of courses is identified as participating in a career and technical education program.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Data Masking
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (Title 20 of the United States Code 1232g; Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 99) prohibits improper disclosure of personally identifiable student information by any educational agency or institution that receives funding under any program administered by the U.S. Department of Education (ED). In 2016, ED guidance on reporting education data in compliance with FERPA changed, relaxing requirements for masking state-level data. Based on this guidance, state-level data presented will no longer be masked, beginning with 2015-16 reporting.
[Source: Secondary School Completion and Dropouts in Texas Public Schools, 2016-17]

Diploma Programs
Students in the class of 2017 were required to enroll in a graduation program when they began Grade 9 in 2013-14. Students could enroll in the Recommended High School Program (RHSP) or the Advanced High School Program (AHSP), unless the student, the student's parent, and a school counselor or administrator agreed to allow the student to enroll in the Minimum High School Program (MHSP) (Title 19 of the Texas Administrative Code [TAC] 74.61). In 2013, the 83rd Texas Legislature established the Foundation High School Program (FHSP) as the new high school graduation program for all students who entered Grade 9 in the 2014-15 school year or later (Texas Education Code [TEC] 28.025). The commissioner of education adopted a transition plan for students graduating in the 2013-14 through 2016-17 school years, giving those students the option of graduating under the new foundation program instead of the existing graduation plans (19 TAC 74.1021 and 74.1022). Although students could graduate under the FHSP in 2013-14, FHSP requirements were not finalized until the 2014-15 school year (19 TAC 74.12). For 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17 graduates who opted into the FHSP, the program required 22 credits to graduate, including four credits in English language arts and three credits each in mathematics, science, and social studies. Additionally, the program allowed students to earn special recognition, known as an endorsement, in one or more fields of study, such as business and industry or arts and humanities (19 TAC 74.13; TEC 28.025). A 2014-15, 2015-16, or 2016-17 graduate could earn an endorsement by successfully completing the following: the curriculum requirements for the FHSP; one additional credit each in mathematics and science; two additional elective credits; and the curriculum requirements for the selected endorsement. Moreover, a graduate who met all of these requirements could also earn a distinguished level of achievement (DLA) if one of the four credits earned in mathematics was for Algebra II (19 TAC 74.11; TEC 28.025). Students receiving special education services were not eligible to pursue an endorsement if they received a modified curriculum in any course required for an endorsement or failed to perform satisfactorily on the required state assessments (19 TAC 89.1070(c)).
[Source: Secondary School Completion and Dropouts in Texas Public Schools, 2016-17]

Dropout
A dropout is a student who is enrolled in public school in Grades 7-12, does not return to public school the following fall, is not expelled, and does not: graduate, receive a Texas Certificate of High School Equivalency (TxCHSE), continue school outside the public school system, begin college, or die.
[Source: Secondary School Completion and Dropouts in Texas Public Schools, 2016-17]

Economically Disadvantaged
A student identified as economically disadvantaged is one who is eligible for free or reduced-price meals under the National School Lunch and Child Nutrition Program.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

English Language Learner (ELL)
A student is classified as an ELL when: (a) a language other than English is used as the primary language in the home, and (b) the student's English language proficiency is determined to be limited by a Language Proficiency Assessment Committee (LPAC) or as indicated by a test of English proficiency. Most students identified as ELLs receive bilingual or English as a second language instruction. For annual dropout and grade-level retention rates, students were identified as ELLs in the 2016-17 school year. For longitudinal graduation and dropout rates, students were identified as ELLs at any time while attending Grades 9-12 in Texas public schools and in their last year in Texas public schools.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards, 19 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) 89.1225]

Foster Care
A student classified as being in foster care is in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services. For annual dropout and grade-level retention rates, students were identified as being in foster care in the 2016-17 school year. For longitudinal graduation and dropout rates, students were identified as being in foster care at any time while attending Grades 9-12 in Texas public schools and in their last year in Texas public schools.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Gifted and Talented
A student identified as gifted and talented is one who performs at or shows the potential for performing at a remarkably high level of accomplishment when compared to others of the same age, experience, or environment, and who: (a) exhibits high performance capability in an intellectual, creative, or artistic area; (b) possesses an unusual capacity for leadership; or (c) excels in a specific academic field.
[Source: TEC 29.121]

Homeless
A student is classified as homeless when the student lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence as defined by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, Title X, Part C, Section 725(2). This definition includes:

  • children and youths who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster care placement;
  • children and youths who have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings;
  • children and youths who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and
  • migratory children (as such term is defined in section 1309 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965) who qualify as homeless because the children are living in circumstances described previously.
For annual dropout and grade-level retention rates, students were identified as homeless in the 2016-17 school year. For longitudinal graduation and dropout rates, students were identified as homeless at any time while attending Grades 9-12 in Texas public schools.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Immigrant
A student identified as an immigrant is one who: (a) is aged 3 through 21; (b) was not born in any state in the United States, Puerto Rico, or the District of Columbia; and (c) has not been attending school in the United States for more than three full academic years. U.S. citizenship is not a factor when identifying a student as an immigrant for the purpose of public school data collection.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Individual Graduation Committee (IGC)
In 2015, the 84th Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill (SB) 149, which revised the state's assessment graduation requirements for students enrolled in Grade 11 or 12 during the 2014-15, 2015-16, or 2016-17 school year (TEC 28.0258). Under the requirements, a student who failed an end-of-course assessment for no more than two of five courses could still receive a Texas high school diploma if he or she was determined to be qualified to graduate by an individual graduation committee (Title 19 of the Texas Administrative Code [TAC] 101.3022). In 2017, the 85th Texas Legislature amended TEC 28.0258 to extend the revised graduation requirements through the 2018-19 school year. For the 2014-15 school year, school districts had the authority to establish necessary procedures and timelines regarding implementation of IGCs. In April 2016, the commissioner of education adopted rules related to IGC implementation, including timelines and related reporting requirements (19 TAC 74.1025; TEC 28.0258(k)).
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Migrant
A student identified as a migrant is one who: (a) is aged 3 through 21; (b) is (or whose parent, spouse, or guardian is) a migratory agricultural worker; and (c) in the preceding 36 months, to obtain temporary employment in agriculture or fishing, or to accompany a parent, spouse, or guardian to obtain such employment: (1) has moved from one school district to another; or (2) resides in a school district of more than 15,000 square miles and migrates a distance of 20 miles or more to a temporary residence to engage in a fishing activity.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Military-Connected
A student identified as a military-connected is one who is enrolled in a school district or open-enrollment charter school who is a dependent of a member of the United States military service in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard on active duty, the Texas National Guard, or a reserve force of the United States military.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Overage
Based on compulsory school attendance laws in Texas, under which most students begin Grade 1 at the age of six, the age of a student in any specified grade is usually equal to that grade level plus five years. For example, most students in Grade 9 are 14 years of age (9+5=14). A student whose age on September 1 is higher than his or her grade level plus five years is classified as overage.
[Source: Secondary School Completion and Dropouts in Texas Public Schools, 2016-17]

Race/Ethnicity
Students in Texas may be classified as:

1) African American: A person having origins in any of the Black racial groups of Africa.
2) American Indian: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America).
3) Asian: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam.
4) Hispanic: A person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.
5) Pacific Islander: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands.
6) White: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, North Africa, or the Middle East.
7) Multiracial: A person having more than one of African American, American Indian, Asian, Pacific Islander, or White races.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Special Education
A student enrolled in a special education program is one who is participating in a special education instructional and related services program or a general education program using special education support services, supplementary aids, or other special arrangements.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]

Title I
A Title I student is one participating in a program authorized under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which is designed to improve the academic achievement of disadvantaged students.
[Source: 2016-17 Texas Education Data Standards]