Saturday, August 4, 2012

Aiming higher, scoring lower

Within a few months, we'll see the first scores from Kentucky's new assessment and accountability system, which means we'll be taking a frank look at where our students now stand compared to strong standards of readiness for college and career.

One good way to imagine what's coming is to think about one of those four-foot-high Fisher-Price basketball hoops.  Anyone who switches from one of those to a regulation court is going to score fewer goals the first season.

Kentucky testing is about to go through the same sort of shift, moving from an old definition of proficiency to a new one that fits better with what students will need in global competition.

While the Department still has some work to do to finalize the scoring system and calculate the statewide results, Commissioner Holiday is now sharing initial estimates that involve big drops.  Here's a comparison, reformatted from numbers shared by the Kentucky School Boards Association:

This is a hard thing, but a good thing: we're now aiming for what our children need, with an honest look at how much we must change to make those higher goals reality.

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Updates and data on Kentucky education!