WEBINAR: How ed leaders are using state test data for pandemic recovery

WEBINAR: How ed leaders are using state test data for pandemic recovery

By Dale Chu

This past weekend, the Associated Press published an article on the current state of play in regard to state testing. The upshot is that states have adopted a patchwork of approaches in large part due to Uncle Sam’s convoluted waiver process. Some states—New Mexico in particular—have really fallen down on the job when it comes to measuring how far students have been set back. Their lousy performance justifies Mike Petrilli’s frank appraisal: “These states are simply playing games. They’re not even pretending to make an effort to test students, and the Biden administration is letting them get away with it.”

Not everyone is being unserious though: Tennessee, Arkansas, and Mississippi (among others) have provided encouraging examples of the right way to handle testing during the pandemic. Indeed, two of these states were highlighted by the AP:

“In Tennessee and Arkansas, education officials have said all healthy students are expected to take state exams, which are only being offered in-person. More than 1.4 million tests have already been given in Arkansas this spring, and the state is on track to test at least 95% of students, according to the state’s education department.”

Suffice to say, despite a persistent chorus to the contrary, there are compelling reasons to administer statewide academic assessments this spring, and these three states have led the way.

On Thursday, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the Collaborative for Student Success will be hosting a webinar with the state schools chiefs from Tennessee, Arkansas, and Mississippi to discuss the benefits of state assessments, and how they plan on using student test data to drive pandemic recovery. I’ll be moderating the event with questions about how each of these leaders plan on communicating the value of assessments, to say nothing of the broader need to improve upon the way we talk about state testing in our schools. I’d welcome any questions you have for them too.

Click here to register and join me for what will surely be a spirited conversation!

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