News Story: NEW COMMON CORE TEST RESULTS TO BE RELEASED TO THE PUBLIC THIS WEEK
By smf for 4LAKids- as a public service to Parents, Teachers and Administrators
STEP I. Whatever you do, don’t think about elephants.
Erase all thoughts about pachyderms.
Dumbo? Never happened.
The symbol of the GOP? Forgetabaoutit!
Once you have mastered not thinking about elephants go to Step II.
STEP II. Don’t think about the STAR Test.
Sure it used to be important and educators’ jobs and student progress and the entire future of public education as we knew it hinged on the STAR Test. The word “reconstitution” wasn’t just for orange juice anymore, taking on a whole dark new meaning.
But no more. STAR (Standardized Testing and Reporting) has been replaced by Smarter Balanced. The paradigm has shifted.
- A STAR is a giant mass of plasma in the cosmos, a perpetual thermonuclear reaction.
- Smarter Balanced sounds like a brand of margarine.
STAR determined student outcomes using measurements and a rubric based on No Child Left Behind and the previous California Standards; filling in the multiple-choice bubbles with a #2 pencil.
SMARTER BALANCED (which may well be neither) determines student outcomes using different measurements and a different rubric based on the vastly different California flavor of the Common Core Standards – on a digital device using an interactive online test.
The Los Angeles Times Editorial Board – which is the mouthpiece for about as traditional mainstream media as it gets – described comparing the STAR Test results to the Smarter Balanced Test Results as comparing Apples to Porcupines.* | see LAT Editorial: WHAT WILL COMMON CORE TEST RESULTS SHOW? http://bit.ly/1OvoWaf
|Fig 1. An apple||Fig 2. A porcupine|
Don’t do it! One is a shiny fruit, distantly related to ornamental roses. The other is a prickly mammal, distantly related to elephants. (Do not dwell on elephants. If you do, return to STEP I.)
All is not lost. One can still compare one school’s Smarter Balanced test scores to another’s. Or one student’s Smarter Balanced score to another’s. Or one state’s SB score to another’s. Unless they have the PARCC Test.
Next year we can compare this year’s Smarter Balanced test scores to next year’s. That’s the idea,
Yes, both tests measure stuff – but a ruler measures stuff and a measuring cup measures stuff and distance and volume are pretty hard to compare without getting into relativity, Space-time and quantum physics. There is no rule of thumb for comparing STAR and Smarter Balanced like there is for Fahrenheit and Celsius or miles and kilometers.
It’s Apples and Porcupines.