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Five Things You Didn't Know About Wisconsin's Smarter Balanced Assessments

Posted by David Moadel

Jun 21, 2015 10:18:00 AM

 

Wisconsin public K-12 education has the same issues and challenges that face so many large-scale instructional systems, namely, assessments and accountability. To address these challenges, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction has utilized various standardized tests throughout the years, from the Wisconsin Pupil Assessment Program in the 1970s and 1980s, to the Wisconsin Reading Comprehension Test (WRCT) of the 1990s. 

The year 1998 brought a new set of academic content standards to the state of Wisconsin, known as the Wisconsin Model Academic Standards (WMAS). During this decade we also saw the advent of the Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Examinations (WKCEs), which were then superseded in recent years by assessments developed in partnership with the consortium known as Smarter Balanced (SBAC). 

It can be hard to keep up with all of these changes, which is why we've compiled this list of five interesting facts that you may not know about Wisconsin's Smarter Balanced assessments.

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Topics: Implementing the Common Core, Resources, State News

Five Things You Didn't Know About Pennsylvania's PSSA State Assessments

Posted by David Moadel

Jun 20, 2015 2:48:00 PM

 

Educational standards matter to students, parents, educators, and the nation as a whole. They also matters to the individual states, and the Pennsylvania Department of Education has shown a long-standing commitment to high standards for all of its K-12 public school students. 

Joining the group of states that have adopted the Common Core State Standards in 2010 was thus a natural move for Pennsylvania, but doing this created a need for testing that would align to these challenging new academic expectations.

Rather than start from scratch, the state adapted a series of exams that were already in place: the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA), which dates back to the earliest years of the millennium as a response to No Child Left Behind (NCLB). 

Over the years, the PSSA has developed into a progressively tougher criterion-referenced battery of assessments aimed at measuring student academic proficiency. With a longer history than many statewide standardized tests, the PSSA serves as a fascinating subject of study as we explore five things you might not know about these assessments.

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Topics: Implementing the Common Core, Resources, State News

Five Things You Didn't Know About the Georgia Milestones Assessments

Posted by David Moadel

Jun 20, 2015 6:54:00 AM

 

As teachers and policymakers know, educational standards and statewide assessments go hand in hand. In Georgia, you certainly won't find statewide public K-12 school assessments that aren't based on specific, rigorous standards, and a prime case in point is the Milestones Assessments. 

These assessments were adopted by the Georgia Department of Education as a replacement for the previously used Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests (CRCTs) for elementary and middle school students, and End of Course Tests (EOCTs) for high school students. 

The new assessments, which are aligned with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) that Georgia adopted in 2010, were rolled out during the 2014-2015 school year for grades 3 through high school.

Since that school year has now come and gone, we can look back and reflect on what we know about the exams. As we'll see in the following five facts, this is unlike any other group of assessments we've ever seen in the state of Georgia.

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Topics: Implementing the Common Core, Resources, State News

Five Things You Didn't Know About Louisiana's PARCC Assessments

Posted by David Moadel

Jun 19, 2015 2:16:00 PM

 

"What gets measured gets mastered"—this is the Louisiana Department of Education's credo regarding statewide assessment. The Department also has an equally catchy tagline for the educational system it governs: "Louisiana Believes."  

To gain some insight into what they believe, we can take a look at how the state measures the academic progress of its K-12 public school students. Like numerous other states, Louisiana has opted to utilize a suite of tests developed in partnership with PARCC, or the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers.   

Here are five things you may not already know about what makes Louisiana's PARCC assessments unique. Enjoy!

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Topics: Implementing the Common Core, Resources, State News

Five Things You Didn't Know About Ohio's PARCC Assessments

Posted by David Moadel

Jun 19, 2015 8:32:00 AM

 

Providing a quality education to more than 1.8 million K-12 public school students in Ohio is the responsibility of the state's educators as well as the Ohio Department of Education. Increased learning expectations among students nationwide has not made this task any simpler, but Ohio has made it clear that the state is up to the challenge. 

In compliance with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), which Ohio adopted in 2010, and aligned with the benchmarks contained in the Ohio Academic Content Standards, the Ohio Achievement Assessments (OAA) were developed to measure student learning gains in math, reading, and science. 

Although the Ohio Department of Education's website still lists the OAA tests as current, changes are afoot in Ohio as OAA tests have recently been supplanted by assessments developed by a consortium known as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC. 

Without further ado, here are five things you may not know about Ohio's statewide achievement tests:

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Topics: Implementing the Common Core, Resources, State News

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