NAEP Committee Wrestles With Exclusion-Rate Policy

By Catherine Gewertz — December 10, 2013 1 min read
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Exclusion rates on NAEP, known as the “nation’s report card,” have been sparking a good deal of soul-searching at NAGB, the organization that sets NAEP policy. If you track this stuff, you surely recall the hubbub that Maryland’s high exclusion rates caused when the most recent scores of 4th and 8th graders were released.

NAGB is now wrestling with the possibility of changing the way it reports exclusion rates, to make more clear not only the changes in exclusion and participation rates year to year—those rates have improved greatly in the last few years—but the reasons students did not take the test.

A new category of “refusals” would be used for students who declined to take the test because the accommodations they’re used to—such as read-aloud—aren’t available on NAEP. There is currently a “refusals” category for students whose parents didn’t allow them to take the test. This would add another type of “refusal,” and take students out of the “excluded” category that now captures their non-participation.

My colleague Christina Samuels has the details for you over at the On Special Education blog.

You can read the supporting documents and presentations that a NAGB committee considered at its meeting last Friday. There’s lots of stuff to dive into here, including data tables that present the exclusion rates.

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