Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The WASL and the IOWA tests ITBS

Click on either chart above to enlarge it.
The WASL improvement at either grade 10 or grade 7 is not reflected in any corresponding improvement in IOWA scores .

Grade 6 ITBS and Grade 7 WASL appear in the top chart.
Grade 9 ITED and Grade 10 WASL appear in the bottom chart.

Dino Rossi said:
We have a plan to make several meaningful education reorms, including replacing the WASL with Aamerica's best standardized test and require (sic) students to meet fair and rigorous standards to graduate. The incumbent still supports the failed WASL test with no math and science requirement.
The Gov said:
Record investments have been made in K-12 education, preparing students for the global economy. These investments have paid off, as more than 90 percent of high school seniors recently passed the WASL.

No wonder we are in the mess we are in ..... Leadership in Education and in Energy in this nation is non-existent.

From the News Tribune:
For Rossi, the WASL is a neat wedge issue because the Washington Education Association, the state's largest teacher union and a reliable supporter of Democrats, detests the WASL. The WEA is out to defeat the re-election bid of state schools chief Terry Bergeson, the prime architect of the test.

The WEA isn't backing off its support for Gregoire, however. The group invited her to speak to its recent annual meeting in Spokane. Bergeson wasn't invited.

For the record, Rossi is correct that the current WASL does not include math or science components, which lawmakers delayed for a few years. The 90 percent pass rate Gregoire cited would certainly have been lower had that not been the case.


Anonymous said...

Actually these scores are correct in 2002 SRI was contracted to review the test because of concerns that students weren't doing well.

OSPI Bulletin (Dec 2002): Superintendent of Public Instruction Terry Bergeson commissioned SRI International to conduct an independent review of the mathematics portion of the WASL after growing concern over the overall lackluster achievement in mathematics by seventh- and 10th-grade students. Students in the Class of 2008 will be expected to pass all four areas of the WASL to graduate with a Certificate of Mastery. Currently, only 37.3 percent of 10th-grade students met or exceeded the math standard on the WASL in 2002.

There were two panels - one was the alignment committee that included Norm Webb, Edward Haertal and John Woodward. Who ran SRI at the time was Edward's wife. And the other study group was the technical review panel. Both groups found everything normal. That bump is interesting because when you look at individual school districts they have the same bump. Its the dip that is the surprise because its the remedy's that come afterward.

I suspect these were questions from the number sense strand that were missing from the new curriculum in 2002 and was left out when they replaced the old curriculum and this was the first crop of students that totally lacked it.

It had to be something very basic, like standard algorithms.

California rewrote their standards in 1997; attempted to revise the framework in 1998 (most of that work was thrown out); and ended up spending around a billion$ to do a new textbook adoption in 1999.

The reform-based standards were finished in 1992 - San Diego and LAUSD were heavily involved in the piloting of those textbooks during that time. So one of the criticisms of the reform movement has always been that by 1995 the media had started the math wars before the new textbooks had even been purchased by school districts.

I don't think this was the case because we had been using the textbooks for a year and then some time during the second year the teachers in our district got together, wanted to get some feedback about the new textbooks and the majority of us agreed that we were doing a lot of supplementing. That was the feedback we gave the state.

In California at that time we had a lot more freedom to use whatever curriculum we felt was needed to teach kids. After Math Renaissance (2 years), I trained to use College Preparatory Math (2 years - both course 1 and course 2), and AVID (2 years), not to mention two years of reading instruction (County and District), two years of SDAIE (County and District), and another year of authentic assessment at the District level. Absolute lunatic asylum.

When I came to Washington, I couldn't believe schools were using the reform textbooks without supplementing them.

California has since been taken over by the standards movement and teachers now get tracked every day - no wonder I'm in the software business. I get paid a whole lot more and I have a lot more fun than getting back-stabbed daily by a group of jackass, bush league administrators.

Anonymous said...

David Klein (I think he gets credited with coining the phrase 'math wars' has a ppt called Washington's Math Standards which makes nearly the same observations we've beening reading about on this blog - mostly get rid of the TEP staff and start using real math professors to write standards.

Also, the bad news is I expect funding for NCTM and NSF will more than likely double and the key phrase is 'lots of staff development'.

Why? Teachers are already laced up in a straitjacket. What makes them think another 10 years of training is going to make Core plus any better.

Taxpayers spent $83 million to have a few authors write the 'exemplary' curriculum and this is what we get in return. I say to hell with them.

Anonymous said...

Dino Rossi - 2 Sets of Points:

1. the big league republicans - governor, united states senator, united states house, president - these republicans are out to destroy EVERYTHING that levels the playing field - especially things like public education.

a. they have lied and they will lie to any subset of voters to get elected, after which it is open season on the public treasury, using the power of government, to screw the little guy & gal so that the wal-marts, halliburtons, LTVs etc etc have NO accountability.

(see Ronald RayGun, BushI, BushII)

2. using the big league republicans as allies in the math wars = thousands and thousands of little guy / gal Democrats are lost as allies.

Unfortuneately, the staggering, inexcusable incompetence of the education bureaucracies with respect to math education will not be fixed with 'allies' who are hard wired into intentionally DESTROYING public education.

It is better to fix the bureaucracies and get rid of the incompetents.