The state Board of Education on Tuesday approved plans to revamp the school grading formula - but made significant changes to the original proposal, which had unleashed a barrage of criticism from parents, teachers, superintendents and business leaders.
State Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson backed off the so-called proficiency trigger, which would have schools get an automatic F if fewer than 25 percent of students were reading at grade level.
Under the revised plan, schools that don't hit the 25 percent mark would instead be docked by one letter grade. The trigger would not kick in until the start of the next school year.
The board approved one of the most hotly debated provisions of the new formula: a plan to include students with disabilities and those who are learning English in the grade calculation. In years past, the formula has only considered whether those students were making improvements, and not whether they were at grade level.