Too Legit To Quit?

In a stack of papers called Testing.

  • Sep
  • 07
  • 2008

My school met AYP and API. However, due to some subgroups not meeting their goals, we missed APR. And, good news, we’re still not a PI school. But we’re a PI district so we have to behave as if we are a PI school.


Yeah, that’s tough to decypher. Who can keep track of all these TLAs? For the uninitiated, just know that these are all measurements of a school’s performance on state standards tests, exit exams, participation percentages in both, and graduation rates.

The two subgroups who fell short of the mandated API growth (state standards tests and exit exam results) are Students with Disabilities (SpEd), who dropped by twenty points, and English Learners (EL), who dropped by seven points.

Illegit Testing

There are gigantic flaws in the way those two specific groups are assessed, so it’s really no surprise that those groups didn’t meet the goals. In the case of these two groups, the lack of preparation for the tests is the direct result of their disability or language acquisition, a product of the only proper way to place a student: SpEd and EL students are in classes that do not necessarily teach the standards for their grade level for completely legitimate reasons. IEPs, other accommodations, and the level of ELD course enrolled in sometimes make this the case. They are handed test booklets based on their year in school, not their current class schedule.

But what does any of this tell us about our instruction? What did we do that caused the increase? What did we do that caused the decrease? Can the variables be excluded enough to even begin to answer these questions? Because isn’t that what these scores are supposed to do for schools, help them then go on to raise performance? Is your school talking about these scores in the context of what it means for classroom instruction?

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