2005 Reidy Interactive Lecture Series

Wrestling With High School Assessment and Accountability

Our 7th annual conference combined beautiful weather in a tranquil New England autumn with in-depth discussion of one of today's most salient topics in assessment. Presenters were drawn from WestEd (co-sponsor of the RILS conference), HumRRO, SREB, and the Center. The conference also provided a forum for wide-ranging and lively discussion that challenged assumptions and probed the topics deeply. The sessions provided articulate conceptual frameworks, useful overviews of the field, a range of specific examples, and concrete recommendations regarding high school assessment and accountability. The differences between high school purposes and earlier grades was emphasized, along with validity concerns when designing assessments that range from end-of-course exams to graduation survey tests to college entrance exams. Discussions of high school accountability similarly emphasized the unique condition of high schools, including the need for comprehensive systems with distributed responsibilities and richer measures.

Session I:

Overview of High School Goals and Assessments
Mark Musick, SREB
Laura Slover, discussant, Achieve

Session II:

Technical Considerations for Assessment
Lauress Wise, HumRRO

Session III:

High School Accountability: A Framework
Scott Marion, Center for Assessment
Linda Mabry, discussant, Washington State University, Vancouver

Session IV:

High School Accountability: A Longer-term View
Brian Gong, Center for Assessment