Tag: Testing

Time to Restructure Testing?

By Kelly McCutchen  Across Georgia, tension is in the air as 1.6 million students endure the annual ritual of end-of-year testing. Nervous students, parents and teachers feel the pressure: The efforts of an entire year hinge upon the performance at this one point in time.   Without a doubt, testing has a vital and necessary role in education. Why else would private schools test their students even though it is not mandated? When used appropriately, testing analyzes strengths and weaknesses, gaps in knowledge and progress toward the ultimate goal of graduation and success. In a perfect world, the results inform educators who then use that information to improve how they teach.   The current testing regime, however, isn’t living up to its… View Article

Full Speed Ahead: Widening the Pathway to College and Career Success

Commentary: Full Speed Ahead: Widening the Pathway to College and Career Success By Dean Alford Our "flat" world is a global economy in which other nations race to surpass American dominance in every area, including higher education. The competition is rapidly intensifying, the stakes are enormous and the implications are sobering. Countries including India and China (which just surpassed Japan as the world’s second-largest economy) are measuring their economic futures by the scope of their investment in education. Today's measure of power is no longer a simple matter of military might but is rooted in a country’s ambition and plan to educate its youth. Today's children are tomorrow’s highly skilled 21st-century workforce that will steer a nation’s fortunes. Yet Americans… View Article

Value-Added in NYC

Last week NYC Chancellor Joel Klein proposed publishing individual teachers' value-added data, L.A. Times-style. Current teacher evaluation systems do not take student achievement into account. That's a given.  Value-added models (VAM), which attempt to measure how much of an effect individual teachers have on students' test scores are potentially very useful as part of a re-worked teacher evaluation system. These data could be useful for promotion, dismissal and other reward decisions. But there are some items that should be discussed more often up front: First, to calculate a VAM score, a teacher has to teach a class to which a standardized test is attached. In Georgia, as in many states, that means that a VAM could only touch somewhere… View Article

A New Day for Georgia Education

By Dr. Benjamin Scafidi and Dr. Holly Robinson The new, more rigorous statewide curriculum, the Georgia Performance Standards, which will make our students and schools more globally competitive, is now being implemented. The results of the 2006 Georgia Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests (CRCT) are trickling in and early indications are that scores have dropped on some tests. This, however, is actually good news. Why are we celebrating? Several national organizations – most recently the RAND Corporation – point out that every state in the nation has lower standards on its own curriculum-based exams relative to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). NAEP, known as “the Nation’s Report Card,” is a highly regarded battery of tests designed to measure what students… View Article

The Georgia Public Policy Foundation has been a catalyst for common sense proposals—and elected officials are listening and reacting.

U.S. Senator Bill Frist more quotes