Thursday, February 12, 2015

Can We Do School Improvement Without Tests?

Marguerite Roza and Robin Lake’s blog on fixing Title 1 is highlighted in this Education Week commentary about accountability and school improvement.

Excerpt from the commentary by David Menefee-Libey:
Education committees are trying yet again to craft a successor to the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001, this time under Republican leadership. They're trying to create the latest update to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which first passed in 1965. So far, they've found it impossible to agree on how to write a new version of the law, and Education Week has reported that much of the haggling this year has been about tests and testing.

But standardized tests have been at the core of "standards-based education" approach that has dominated school reform politics since the publication of A Nation At Risk in 1983….

That's not going to go away. Marguerite Roza and Robin Lake are right that the whole point of the ESEA is to target assistance to the most vulnerable students, and that we need valid and reliable assessments to know when those vulnerable students are being poorly served. In the long run, tests will survive the populist revolt.

Read the full commentary.

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