Adequate Yearly Progress

The adequate yearly progress (AYP) provisions are among the more complex requirements of ESEA.

States must establish a baseline or starting point they will use to measure their progress over the next 12 years in meeting a key goal: That all students are performing at a "proficient" level or above on state reading and math assessments by 2013-14.

States must also:

  • determine how they will define "proficient" student performance in reading and math
  • decide what indicators of student performance they will include in their definitions of AYP
  • set incremental AYP targets that establish minimal levels of increased student performance from 2002-03 through 2013-14
  • set an initial threshold that is at a minimum the higher of the percent of students proficient in the statewide lowest achieving subgroup or the local school at the 20th percentile in the state.


Schools that do not meet the AYP will be subject to sanctions requiring school improvement, corrective action, and restructuring.

  • Schools that fail to make AYP two years in a row must notify parents of the school's status, provide public school choice, prepare a two-year improvement plan, use 10% or more of Title I funds for professional development, receive technical assistance from the school district, and receive federal school improvement funds.
  • Schools that fail to meet the AYP four years in a row must continue with all prior corrective activities plus one of the following:
    1. appoint "outside expert"
    2. extend school day or school year
    3. replace staff "relevant to failure"
    4. restructure internal organization
  • Schools that fail to meet the AYP five years in a row must continue all prior activities and make plans and arrangements for restructuring.