With field testing of the exams measuring mastery of the Common Core State Standards now well underway across the United States, attention is focusing on practical questions relating to execution. In addition, some people have raised the conceptual question of whether the exams developed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium and the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) can truly deliver what they promised in their original bids for federal funding, according to a recent article in Education Week. The assessment article is part of an EdWeek package of coverage on various aspects of Common Core.
Both testing consortia have scaled back the length or complexity of some test elements, said the article, with testing experts saying that the consortia’s current accomplishments seem like a “first draft of their original goals.” Still, Scott Marion of the National Center for the Improvement of Educational Assessment said the 2014-2015 tests “will be better than almost all existing state tests, if not all.”
Meanwhile, a number of states are continuing to wrestle with their involvement in the Common Core standards and assessment. In Tennessee, the House of Representatives recently passed a measure delaying implementation of PARCC testing for one year. In the meantime, the state will keep its current TCAP tests in place and will put the new testing contract out for bid. To learn more, read this article from the Nashville Post.