NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED505034
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Apr-7
Pages: 24
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 8
Conflicts Between State Policy and School Practice: Learning from Arizona's Experience with High School Exam Policies
Zhang, Ying
Center on Education Policy
This report by the Center on Education Policy (CEP) looks at how local educators perceive and act on state policies designed to help at-risk students and English language learners (ELLs) achieve the levels of proficiency needed to pass state high school exit examinations and graduate. Our findings are based on data from school observations and interviews with more than 50 school administrators, teachers, and other school staff in Arizona. In particular, the report seeks to answer two main questions: (1) What are the causes of confusion among teachers and students about the state policy regarding alternate paths to high school graduation? and (2) Which factors impact the effective implementation of state policies aimed at improving instruction and closing achievement gaps? The data in this report are drawn from our 2007 study that looked at the impact of Arizona's exit exam on teaching and learning for ELLs (CEP, 2007). In particular, (CEP) describes local implementation of state policies in three areas--Arizona's augmentation policy, which offers students who have failed the state exit exam an alternate path to graduation by allowing them to augment their exam scores with points derived from passing grades in their courses; a high school language proficiency test used to place ELLs in English language development (ELD) services; and a policy that requires individualized instructional plans for ELLs and students who have failed state assessments. This report also builds on knowledge gained from CEP's study of all states with high school exit exams, now in its eighth year. Appended are: (1) Descriptive Data about Schools Studied, 2005-06; and (2) Percentage of 10th Graders Who Performed at the "Meets" or "Exceeds Standards" Level (Graduation Passing Levels) on AIMS, 2005-06. (Contains 3 endnotes.)
Center on Education Policy. 1001 Connecticut Avenue NW Suite 522, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-822-8065; Fax: 202-822-6008; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Grade 10; High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Center on Education Policy
Identifiers - Location: Arizona