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ERIC Number: EJ1131521
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Sep
Pages: 34
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: EISSN-2380-0860
Locally Developed Performance Assessments: One State's Decision to Supplant Standardized Tests with Alternative Measures
Abbott, Amy Lynn
Journal of Organizational and Educational Leadership, v2 n1 Article 5 Sep 2016
The purpose for this study was to develop a descriptive account of one large Virginia school district's plan for implementation of alternative, locally developed assessments designed to supplant standardized measures. As policy reform with alternative assessments has been under-researched for the past 30 years, there is a need for studies conducted at the district/state level that examine new methods and procedures to assess cognitive growth and complex skill sets (Darling-Hammond, et al., 2013). This research was timely as the action plan implemented by the Longridge City Public School division during the first trial, 2014-2015 school year, was reported. For this descriptive case study (Stake, 1995; Yin, 2014), the research questions are as follows: (1) What are the processes of a school division's leadership team for the development and enactment of alternative assessments? and (2) What are the needs and challenges of a school division's leadership team during the development and enactment of alternative assessment? The present study holds significance as it extends previous investigations of how state policy reform is linked with educational practice at the district level. In light of the reform, placing the focus on support and leadership at the local level was purposeful in discovering the considerations and actions necessary to meet the needs of numerous stakeholder groups across Longridge City Public Schools. To answer the research questions, the Virginia Department of Education 2014 legislative guidelines served as a framework to guide the development of this study. The tradition of case study (Yin, 2014) as an analytical approach was used to uncover the processes enacted by central office personnel (i.e., district leaders) to develop and implement alternative assessment, in the format of "performance-based assessments," or PBAs. The findings reveal the district's ability to comply with the state's legislative reform mandates, while to navigate new territory of "local control."
School of Education at Gardner-Webb University. P.O. Box 7304, Bolling Springs, NC 28017. Tel: 704-406-4295; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Virginia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A