Assessment

Md. Pulls Out Of NAEP Pool For Grade 12

By Sean Cavanagh — November 29, 2005 2 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Maryland has elected not to take part in a series of 12th grade tests on the National Assessment of Educational Progress next year—the first time, federal officials say, that a state has opted out of an entire set of NAEP exams at that level.

State officials are worried about burdening students with an increasing number of mandatory exams, Maryland’s top testing administrator said, so forgoing participation in the voluntary 12th grade NAEP makes sense.

“We’re trying to take off the plate those things that are not critical,” said Gary Heath, the assistant state superintendent for accountability and assessment. The state is phasing in mandatory exams for graduation in several subjects, he said. When it comes to NAEP, school officials are “not excited about one more test,” Mr. Heath said.

NAEP’s backers have worried about maintaining interest and participation in the federally sponsored exam, as states and schools face increasing requirements to test under the No Child Left Behind Act. Federal officials interpret Maryland’s decision to mean that the state will not participate in testing in three subjects: U.S. history, civics, and economics in 12th grade, as well as voluntary 4th and 8th grade exams in U.S. history.

States must take part in NAEP in reading and mathematics at the 4th and 8th grade levels to be eligible for federal funding. Those tests allow for state-by-state comparisons of academic progress.

Maryland’s decision pertains to a separate, voluntary section of the assessment, known as the national NAEP. Only 40 states are expected to take part in the 2006 version, federal officials say.

Maryland officials worry about low participation and interest in the national NAEP among seniors, Mr. Heath said. The state’s future involvement in NAEP could depend on whether federal officials devise strategies to increase interest, he said, and thus ensure the test’s statistical validity.

Peggy G. Carr, an associate commissioner of the National Center for Educational Statistics, which administers NAEP, said other states had opted out of single, voluntary tests, but not an entire set of assessments, as Maryland has. She said the 2006 national test results would still be statistically valid without Maryland.

“It’s only a concern in that it may set a precedent for other states to follow,” Ms. Carr said. Without states’ participation, she said, the test could not “remain truly representative of the nation.”

Related Tags:

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Reading & Literacy Webinar
Your Questions on the Science of Reading, Answered
Dive into the Science of Reading with K-12 leaders. Discover strategies, policy insights, and more in our webinar.
Content provided by Otus
Mathematics Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table: Breaking the Cycle: How Districts are Turning around Dismal Math Scores
Math myth: Students just aren't good at it? Join us & learn how districts are boosting math scores.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Achievement Webinar
How To Tackle The Biggest Hurdles To Effective Tutoring
Learn how districts overcome the three biggest challenges to implementing high-impact tutoring with fidelity: time, talent, and funding.
Content provided by Saga Education

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Assessment The 5 Burning Questions for Districts on Grading Reforms
As districts rethink grading policies, they consider the purpose of grades and how to make them more reliable measures of learning.
5 min read
Grading reform lead art
Illustration by Laura Baker/Education Week with E+ and iStock/Getty
Assessment As They Revamp Grading, Districts Try to Improve Consistency, Prevent Inflation
Districts have embraced bold changes to make grading systems more consistent, but some say they've inflated grades and sent mixed signals.
10 min read
Close crop of a teacher's hands grading a stack of papers with a red marker.
E+
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Assessment Sponsor
Fewer, Better Assessments: Rethinking Assessments and Reducing Data Fatigue
Imagine a classroom where data isn't just a report card, but a map leading students to their full potential. That's the kind of learning experience we envision at ANet, alongside educators
Content provided by Achievement Network
Superintendent Dr. Kelly Aramaki - Watch how ANet helps educators
Photo provided by Achievement Network
Assessment Opinion What's the Best Way to Grade Students? Teachers Weigh In
There are many ways to make grading a better, more productive experience for students. Here are a few.
14 min read
Images shows colorful speech bubbles that say "Q," "&," and "A."
iStock/Getty