Assessment Literacy Accountability Performance Assessment Educational Assessment Center Updates

2022 Summer Internships: Improving Educational Assessment and Accountability

Center Staff and Interns Look Toward the Future of Educational Assessment and Accountability

After two productive but virtual summers, we are looking forward to working side-by-side with our new group of summer interns to support the future of educational assessment and accountability through our 2022 summer internship program

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Accountability ESSA Complex Communication

What's in a Name? Sometimes, Quite a Bit

Considering the Effects of COVID-19 Disruptions on Identifying Schools for Supports Under ESSA

Following a two-year hiatus, states must restart their school accountability systems required under ESSA and identify schools for supports. In addition to well-documented technical concerns, states must also consider how they report accountability results, the labels they use to communicate quality to the public, and the words they use to describe performance. Do the names and labels so carefully crafted when the accountability system was developed pre-pandemic have the same meaning in spring 2022? I explore these ideas in this blog post. 

What’s in a Name? 

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Through Year Assessment State Assessment Educational Assessment Accountability Large-Scale Assessment Assessment Systems

But Will It Work in Practice?

Practical Challenges to the Use of Through-Year Assessment for Accountability

The interest in using through-year assessment systems in place of traditional end-of-year state summative assessments has been increasing rapidly and was the subject of a convening hosted by the Center for Assessment in November 2021.

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Accountability ESSA Operational Best Practices

Supporting A Principled Approach to Restarting School Accountability in Spring 2022

Operational Best Practices for Accountability

Recently, my colleague Chris Domaleski reminded us of the complexity associated with restarting school accountability in Spring 2022.  It is unlikely that this problem will have a simple or straightforward solution. He presented four principles states should consider as they chart their own contextually appropriate courses moving forward: 

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Accountability ESSA ESSER

A Principled Approach to Accountability in 2022 

Four Principles to Guide State Decisions about ESSA Accountability Systems

A large part of the work my colleagues and I do at the Center is focused on helping our clients solve hard problems. This year I’ve encountered one of the thorniest problems I’ve seen in my career. Stated simply, what should states do about federally required school accountability in 2022? When deliberating about a new challenge, we sometimes quip, “if there was an easy answer, we probably wouldn’t be involved.” Although there are seldom easy or perfect solutions to hard problems, we always work to help states take a principled approach to finding the best solution for their situation. 

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Accountability ESSA Opportunity to Learn Personalized Learning Education Policy

Accountability Doesn’t Need to be Restarted. It Needs to be Revised!

Making the Case for a New Approach to Federal School Accountability

The U.S. Department of Education followed an all too familiar pattern of publishing important guidance just before the Christmas holiday, dropping a lump of coal in the stockings of state accountability directors. The gift, or Christmas miracle, that states needed was an acknowledgment that federal school accountability requirements need to be revised, not simply restarted. Unfortunately, the draft requirements simply discuss (direct) how states must restart their accountability systems in 2021-2022 after what has essentially been a 2-year accountability hiatus. 

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Accountability ESSA Opportunity to Learn Education Policy

Charting a Course for School Accountability in 2022

Navigating Federal Requirements

In the midst of the holiday season, the U.S. Department of Education (USED) released a draft FAQ addressing the requirements for school accountability in 2022 under ESSA. We won’t call this release a gift, but it at least provides some clarity for states deep in planning for 2021–22 accountability.

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Accountability Assessment school disruptions Center Updates

Oh, What a Year…Again

Responding to Assessment and Accountability Challenges During an Ongoing Pandemic

I titled my 2020 year-end CenterLine post, “Oh, What a Year!” with hopes that we were turning the pandemic corner. There’s no question the widespread availability of vaccines beginning in early spring 2021 gave us all a sense of hope only to have it dashed and renewed multiple times throughout this year following COVID’s ebb and flow.

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Accountability Assessment Systems Utility Technical Documentation Validation

User-Friendly Documentation and Validation Processes

Part 2: Documentation Makes for a Good System. What Makes for a Good System of Documentation?

Validity is the ultimate goal of any system. The concept of validity is relatively straightforward: it means that an instrument, or system, measures what it is purported to measure. Getting valid results in practice is a little more complicated. The validation process is greatly facilitated by, and perhaps even dependent upon, the availability of complete and user-friendly documentation. After all, an ineffective system of documentation can lead to ineffective implementation, which throws into question the validity of the entire system and its outputs.

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Accountability Strategic Planning Tactical Planning Technical Documentation

User-Friendly Documentation and Validation Processes

Part 1: Supporting A Vision with Documented Strategy and Tactics

Professionally and personally, we often have projects or tasks where we define desired goals or outcomes, and sometimes even identify the steps that it will take to get from where we are to where we want to be. However, we often end up frustrated and short of our goal because we have not fully documented the strategy and tactics required to achieve the desired outcome. 

Enter the difference between specifying an outcome for Halloween (i.e., a rad costume), and the strategy and tactics necessary to make it happen. 

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