What Do The Tests Measure?
Christopher Tienken (Seton Hall) has solved a mystery.
Along with Anthony Colella (Seton Hall), Christian Angelillo (Boonton Township SD), Meredith Fox (Nanuet Union SD), Kevin McCahill (George W. Miller Elementary) and Adam Wolfe (Peoria Unified SD), Tienken has once again answered the question-- what do the Big Standardized Tests actually measure?
Put another way, Tienken et. al. have demonstrated that we do not need to actually give the Big Standardized Test in order to generate the "student achievement" data, because we can generate the same data by looking at demographic information all by itself.
Tienken and his team used just three pieces of demographic data--
1) percentage of families in the community with income over $200K
2) percentage of people in the community in poverty
3) percentage of people in community with bachelor's degrees
Using that data alone, Tienken was able to predict school district test results accurately in most cases. In New Jersey 300 or so middle schools, the team could predict middle school math and language arts test scores for well over two thirds of the schools.
I suppose some folks could see this as good news ("Cancel the PARCC test and don't pay them a cent! We can just fudge our test results by plugging in demographic data!") but I'd characterize it more as frightening, given that ESSA continues to demand that teachers and administrators and schools be CURMUDGUCATION: What Do The Tests Measure?: