(1) To enable States (or consortia of States) to collaborate with institutions of higher education, other research institutions, or other organizations to improve the quality, validity, and reliability of State academic assessments beyond the requirements for [NCLB] assessments.In the past, competitive Title VI grants have encouraged states to do those things, but the stimulus bill provides a much stronger incentive.
(2) To measure student academic achievement using multiple measures of student academic achievement from multiple sources.
(3) To chart student progress over time.
(4) To evaluate student academic achievement through the development of comprehensive academic assessment instruments, such as performance and technology-based academic assessments.
(Section 6112 of the ESEA is here, and the initials are short for the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the federal legislation that includes Title 1 and some other education efforts. To read the stimulus bill, I recommend downloading the conference committee version of the bill here. Search for "Sec. 14005" to see the required assurances.)