ERIC Number: EJ975126
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Apr-25
Reference Count: N/A
Waivers to Widen Test Menu
Robelen, Erik W.
Education Week, v31 n29 p1, 20-21 Apr 2012
As states seek waivers under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, one effect may be to chip away at the dominance reading and math have had when it comes to school accountability. Many state waiver applications include plans to factor test scores in one or more additional subjects into their revised accountability systems. Seven of the 11 states that won waivers in the first round intend to do so, and about a dozen of those that applied in the second round have the same intent. Science is the most popular choice, followed by writing and social studies. Georgia, for instance, plans to include all three of those subjects in the elementary and middle grades in its new accountability system for schools, plus a set of high school end-of-course exams. Other states, such as Florida, Kentucky, and South Carolina, have for years factored achievement in subjects beyond reading and math into separate state accountability systems, but those results were not counted for No Child Left Behind purposes. Through their waiver plans, officials in those three states say they offer an approach to end the problem of having two sets of competing demands by creating a unified system, and one that would consistently count the same subjects. Oklahoma is moving to a new A-to-F grading system built around test scores in reading, writing, math, science, and social studies, as well as other measures. A state official said that even though subjects like science and social studies had a role in the state's prior accountability system, those subjects were not part of rating schools, and now are poised to gain greater attention.
Descriptors: Federal Legislation, Grading, Accountability, Achievement Rating, Educational Policy, Educational Indicators, Alignment (Education), Educational Planning, Educational Strategies, State Action, State Standards, Politics of Education, Interdisciplinary Approach, Systems Approach
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001