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ERIC Number: ED506121
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jun
Pages: 36
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 20
State Test Score Trends through 2007-08. Part 1: Is the Emphasis on "Proficiency" Shortchanging Higher- and Lower-Achieving Students?
Chudowsky, Naomi; Chudowsky, Victor; Kober, Nancy
Center on Education Policy
This report is the first in a series of reports describing results from the Center on Education Policy's (CEP's) third annual analysis of state testing data. The report provides an update on student performance at the proficient level of achievement, and for the first time, includes data about student performance at the advanced and basic levels. Also included are profiles for each state, which show trends in reading and math for basic, proficient, and advanced levels in elementary, middle, and high school. The study provides an in-depth look at the full range of student performance in order to better understand whether the No Child Left Behind Act's (NCLB) focus on proficiency has caused teachers to shortchange students at either end of the academic spectrum. Reported findings include: (1) Student achievement in reading and math, as measured by the percentages of students reaching various achievement levels, has generally increased across the board since 2002; (2) The proficient-and-above level (the target for NCLB purposes) showed the greatest gains; (3) At the basic-and-above level, most states also made gains; (4) The advanced level showed more upward than downward trends, as well; (5) Although achievement improved at all three grade levels analyzed, there were fewer gains at the high school level than at the elementary or middle school level; and (6) The study found no strong evidence that NCLB's focus on proficiency is shortchanging students at the advanced or basic levels. Two appendices are included: (1) Study Methods and Noteworthy Features; and (2) State-by-State Trends at Three Achievement Levels. (Contains 1 figure, 2 boxes, and 10 tables.) [Additional funding was provided by Phi Delta Kappa International Foundation. For "State Test Score Trends through 2007-08. Part 2: Is There a Plateau Effect in Test Scores?," see ED506122.]
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: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: William and Flora Hewlett Foundation; Smith Richardson Foundation; George Gund Foundation
Authoring Institution: Center on Education Policy
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001