AUSTIN (AP) – Texas’ new education commissioner says that a revised system for rating schools should look at how well they close the achievement gap for minority students.

Michael Williams appeared before his first State Board of Education meeting on Thursday. He said he plans to change how schools are rated by March 2013.

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Presently schools and districts are rated on how students perform on state-mandated standardized tests, and they receive a ranking such as “academically acceptable.”

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Williams said that he is considering a system that would establish an index for rating schools. He said that because economically-disadvantaged and minority children now make up 60 percent of the student population, schools should be rated on how well that close the performance gap between those students and middle-class white students.

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