Standards and Assessment News | January 15


Debate Over Florida’s High School Assessments Continues

A recent study by the Assessment Solutions Group determined that exchanging the SAT or ACT for Florida’s Algebra I and high school ELA assessment may not be a good plan. Neither of the national assessments meets all of Florida’s academic standards for those two courses, meaning districts may need to supplement with additional assessment items. Learn more


Georgia Implements Assessments for Grades One and Two

In response to a 2016 law, the Georgia DOE is implementing a new, game-based assessment for grades one and two. Participation is voluntary for school districts, and teachers will not be held accountable for the results. The new assessment is called Keenville, and it will assess ELA and Math. Learn more ; Learn more here


ACLU Disputes Kentucky Bible Literacy Standards

The Kentucky ACLU has expressed concerns about a law requiring the state to develop standards for a Bible Literacy elective in Social Studies. The ACLU is concerned that the course will be unconstitutional by “preaching” instead of teaching. In order to be legal, the course must be taught as academic and historical and not devotional. A review of current Bible Literacy elective courses in several districts exposed some issues with the legality of the curriculum. Learn more ; Learn more here ; Learn more here too


Oklahoma Releases Computer Science Draft

Oklahoma has released a draft of new, grade-specific computer science standards. The public comment period for the standards ended in early January. If approved, the standards will be implemented in the 2018-2019 school year. Learn more ; Learn more here


Pennsylvania Adopts CSTA Computer Science Standards

The Pennsylvania State Board of Education has endorsed the CSTA Computer Science standards, with approval from the governor. No implementation date has been provided. Learn more ; Learn more here


Texas Begins Interim STAAR Pilot

Texas is beginning a voluntary pilot of an interim STAAR assessment this spring. The interim assessment will be available in grades three through eight in Math and Reading in spring 2018. For the 2018- 2019 pilot, Algebra I, English I, English II, and Spanish in grades three through five will be available. Student data will be available two weeks after the pilot closes in March, 2018. Districts may give the interim assessment to the entire district, or just to a select group. The interim assessment pilot will not be part of any accountability measures. Learn more ; Learn more here ; Learn more here too


States Slow to Apply for ESSA Assessment Pilot

With deadlines looming this spring, few states are expected to apply for the ESSA Innovative Assessment Pilot this year. The Pilot has strict requirements, and would likely require help from testing companies. However, New York, Georgia, Hawaii, have expressed future interest in the Pilot. In future years, assessments linked to the NGSS may work well for innovations in testing. Learn more


Decline in 2017 Scores is Concern for SBAC

Thirteen out of fourteen states that use the SBAC assessment saw no increase in scores or a decline in scores from 2016 to 2017. This follows the previous year in which states showed typical gains. SBAC is the type of assessment that should be comparable from year to year, which means that the 2017 scores cause concern. It is unlikely that the scores actually declined, which leads to speculation that there is an issue with the test itself. Learn more