Smarter Balanced Assessments 16 [updated]

A few links:

The Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, & Student Testing (CRESST) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium have agreed to form a partnership.  CRESST previously released a report assessing the progress of the work by both SBAC and PARCC and identifying challenges.

Education Week reports on the release of a study, “Developing Assessments of Deeper Learning: The Costs and Benefits of Using Tests That Help Students Learn,” by Linda Darling-Hammond and Frank Adamson.  Unsurprisingly, the study determines that there is plenty of money in state and district education budgets to pay for Smarter Balanced Assessments or PARCC Assessments (Darling-Hammond is a member of the SBAC Technical Advisory Committee).  It is suggested that districts could reallocate money from other interim assessments and test preparation materials currently used by districts to pay for the new tests.  It is also suggested that professional development money could be reallocated to pay local teachers to score the Smarter Balanced Assessment items that cannot currently be scored by computer.

Education Week notes that the current estimated cost for the Smarter Balanced Assessments is now up to $22 per student for the summative test only, but the estimated costs for adding the interim and formative assessment tools has been reduced to $5 per student.

Why not question whether students would be better served by ending high-stakes, standardized testing rather than trying to write “better” high-stakes, standardized tests?

And finally, a repeat of a quote from a University of Virginia Magazine article linked to last week:

“There are no good tests for critical or creative thinking,” [Dan] Willingham says.  ”But we can test factual knowledge pretty well.  Success in those should be seen as an indicator of a higher potential for critical thinking.”

Update: HT @mccleod: an analysis of an SBAC high school level mathematics question and an analysis of PARCC mathematics questions from CCSSI Mathematics.

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