Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Which teams will compete in the race for federal testing funds?

The federal government has launched a $350 million competition to develop higher quality student assessments.  Today. EdWeek describes three groups of states that are expected to apply:
Leaders of the groups told Education Week that Achieve, a Washington-based organization that works with states to craft standards and accountability systems, is talking with about 30 states, led by Florida, Massachusetts, and Louisiana, about devising a system of summative assessments that would include performance tasks.

The so-called MOSAIC consortium of states, which is focusing on formative assessments, is now working with what’s being called the SMARTER group, which focuses on computer-adaptive testing, and the “balanced assessment” consortium, which emphasizes curriculum-embedded, performance-based tests scored by teachers. That larger, merged group is led by Stanford University professor Linda Darling-Hammond and leaders of states such as Maine, West Virginia, and Oregon. The group currently includes about 40 states, according to Ms. Darling-Hammond. Consortia memberships overlap and are in flux.

Another consortium, including about eight states and headed by the National Center on Education and the Economy, aims to design high school tests modeled on the British “board exams.
Under Senate Bill 1, Kentucky could benefit from all three approaches: we need a summative test for accountability, formative tools to raise achievement, and end-of-course assessments to focus high school students tightly on key subjects.

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Updates and data on Kentucky education!