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College & Workforce Readiness

More Contenders for Race to Top Assessment Competition?

By Catherine Gewertz — May 07, 2010 1 min read

We’re learning a little more about possible applicants for a slice of the $30 million in Race to the Top money to design high school end-of-course assessments.

Sources tell me that the College Board and ACT Inc., are each soliciting states’ interest in forming consortia to apply for the money. The ACT hosted a webinar for interested states this morning, I’m told, and College Board is doing likewise on Monday.

(For those of you just checking in to the Race to the Top assessment competition, check my blog posts here and here to learn about what it is and who’s officially thrown their hats into the ring. But any groups that feature the College Board or ACT would be add-ons to that list.)

We don’t yet know how far the ACT or College Board ideas have evolved, and whether they will ultimately result in forming state consortia to apply for the RTT money. But an e-mail sent to some states last Friday by the College Board said its idea is to “leverage the design used in Advanced Placement (AP) examinations, which are teacher-developed (in collaboration with college faculty) and teacher-scored assessments, and which include extensive use of performance-based items that yield summative scores that are highly reliable, valid and fair. On-line administration could enable innovative assessment formats such as projects and other performance activities, and could also support lower-cost web-based teacher scoring.”

We should hasten to add here that the e-mail didn’t say that applying for RTT money was a given. It said the College Board was interested in supporting states’ efforts that way, or “in some other way.”

A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.