Jan 28, 2018
Wait, more testing? It might sound counterintuitive to many education reformers, but to the recently formed Missouri Assessment Partnership, shorter and more frequent tests throughout the school year could help educators better measure student growth, and reduce pressure on students to practice for high-stakes tests.
This sounds promising. It is for the around 240,000 Missouri students who comprise the roughly 50 school districts interested in the partnership. The current batch of high-stakes testing conducted once a year isn’t “really about student learning,” says Keith Marty, the superintendent for Parkway School District, one of those 50 Missouri school districts looking to sign up to the partnership. “It’s about sorting” good and bad schools, Marty adds, and not much more of use to students or educators.
Reformers argue the old model of testing students one time each year also ignores students’ different learning needs. Worse yet, schools don’t know how well their students performed until the next school year. Take last year for instance: Missouri schools administered tests in spring, only to receive official results by November…
What’s next? The Missouri Assessment Partnership is due to launch in July 2018, raising funds through partnering schools’ membership fees to meet its goal of testing a new assessment system by Fall 2019, with a statewide rollout by 2023.
The bottom line for tutors… More frequent and targeted testing will be a boon for tutors. Like their classroom counterparts, tutors will be able to track student growth more effectively and adjust their lesson plans accordingly.