TESTS "GUARANTEED" NOT TO GET EASIER? YEAH, RIGHT
Ditto with WASL washington test - we are assured that "scientific"
methods are used to link tests with past years, yet every school in
the state had 50% more students pass than last year. Also many
teachers taught how to answer last years problems, many of which
are deliberately repeated the next year.
Date sent: Wed, 18 Nov 1998 11:42:36 -0500
From: "Richard G. Innes" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: [education-consumers] RE: TAAS Not Tough Enough
Send reply to: "Richard G. Innes" <email@example.com>
>From the news article in Donna Gardner's post:
We were told the same thing about Kentucky's KIRIS test when it first
began. However, linking open-response questions and performance events is
a terribly challenging proposition. In the end, the performance events
link failed miserably, and the jury is still out on the open-response
questions. Never-the-less, KIRIS experienced similar, well grounded,
charges that it simply got easier over time.
Once again, the NEGP used highly controversial NAEP data. NEGP used the
NAEP "Achievement Level" results which are now being criticized for
inaccuracy by many professionals.
The reporter adds to the confusion by implying that the tests have been
given continually from 1990 to 1997.
FACT: Only the following NAEP tests can currently be cited for trend
information: 4th Grade math in 1992 and 1996, 8th Grade math in 1990, 1992
and 1996, and 4th Grade reading for 1992 and 1994.
Based on the accurate NAEP "Scale Scores," Texas did have remarkable
success on the 4th Grade math tests, rising from 19 out of 37 participating
states in 1992 to 6th of 43 in 1996 (48.6 to 86th percentile).
On 8th Grade math, Texas went from 19 out of 30 participants in 1990 to 20
out of 40 participants in 1996 (36.6 to 50th percentile).
On 4th Grade reading, the numbers were 21 out of 37 in 1992 to 24 out of 39
in 1994 (43 to 38th percentile).
So, the Texas picture is a mixed bag, at best. Also note that, except for
4th Grade math, Texas has never placed in the top half of states taking the
NAEP. I'd be more interesting in seeing why North Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska
and Montana consistently score at or near the top on NAEP. If NAEP is the
door to progress (a position some would challenge), those are the states
with the key.
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