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ERIC Number: ED458297
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000
Pages: 9
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Whose Standards Are They, Anyway?
Chartrand, Anne
Over the years, the definitions of educational standards have become more varied, and the issue of what standards really mean has become more confusing. The answer to the question, "For whom are content standards developed?" helps determine who takes them seriously. Establishing clear content standards plays a critical role in an instructional program, and any discussion about establishing content standards must include a discussion of how to assess standards. The specifications for an assessment should come from the content standards if the state or school district truly believes the content standards are essential skills and knowledge students should learn. If the emphasis is all on a norm-referenced test, it is at best difficult, if not impossible, to report exactly what the student knows and can do. The overemphasis on a single test score remains. In many cases the emphasis on increasing test scores comes at the expense of the best educational practices for all students. In considering the demand for increased test scores, one must wonder when they will be high enough. Should all schools be expected to have the same amount of growth or the same score levels? On the positive side, large scale assessments are developed more carefully than they were years ago. The underlying question of whether the emphasis on standards and assessment is having a positive effect on instructional improvement and achievement overall is being examined, and the creation of this dialogue may be the best result of the efforts toward higher standards. Neither identifying standards nor administering assessments will make students "smarter," but discussing the roles of standards and assessments can result in the improvement of instruction. (SLD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A