Friday, March 28, 2008

Math Hokey Pokey

You put the math WASL in, you take the math WASL out...

This week, Gov. Gregoire approved a plan that would phase out use of the math WASL and eliminate it as a graduation requirement. But don't let your students think they're off the hook entirely. Here's how things will work:
  • The changes announced this week will NOT apply to this year's seniors.
  • Students in grades 3-8 will still sit for the WASL in mathematics, as required by the federal No Child Left Behind Act.
  • The graduating class of 2013 (this year's seventh-graders) will have the option of taking an passing either the math WASL or individual end-of-course (EOC - yes, a new acronym) exams. In 2014, the math WASL will be no more and only end-of-course exams in subjects like algebra and geometry will be used.
  • $3.2 million was allocated this session for development of the EOCs.
  • High school students will still be required to take and pass the reading and writing WASLs, in addition to completing a high school and beyond plan, culminating project and any credits required by the district to graduate.
This week's bill signing marks yet another change schools must communicate about graduation and testing requirements to teachers, students, families and the community.

What do you think about the decision? Will end-of-course exams work better than the WASL for assessing students skills in areas like algebra and geometry? Do you think we will see different test results?

How are you sharing the changes with your key audiences at school?

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