Changes in NY Common Core Tests Result in Higher Scores
Changes in the New York Common Core test have resulted in higher scores throughout the state, according to state officials in New York.
The state Education Department lowered the number of points needed to reach proficiency levels in six of the twelve math and English exams given to third through eighth grade students.
Last year the students’ scores plunged on the statewide tests – it was the first round of tests since the new Common Core standards were administered.
The score cutoffs were tweaked following this year’s tests. The state found six tests were harder and four were easier in 2014 than last year. To determine this, they compared how students performed on anchor test questions, the items used on tests in both 2013 and 2014. A more thorough report on the scoring process will be released in a few months.
Fred Smith, a former testing analyst for city schools said, ”The information given out about the test questions does not provide a complete picture, making it hard to judge how much progress students made last year.”
Overall in 2014, the number of city students who passed the math exam jumped from 30.1 to 34.5 percent. The number of students rated proficient in English increased from 27.4 to 29.4.
Mayor de Blasio declared, “It’s a good day for the whole New York City school system.” He explained that students and schools shouldn’t be judged exclusively on tests.
While I think it’s a slippery slope when it comes to score manipulation because it makes proof of progress hard to measure, I do agree with Mayor de Blasio. Schools shouldn’t be judged solely on test scores, so this is something worth applauding.