The following principles are drawn from the report of the Expert Panel on Assessment of the Forum on Educational Accountability and represent a launching point from which conference discussions on what is necessary to construct high-quality assessment and accountability systems may begin.
1. Ensure all students have equitable and adequate access to the resources needed to succeed.
2. Construct comprehensive and coherent systems of state and local assessments of student learning that:
These are questions FairTest believes should be asked of Arne Duncan at his confirmation hearing for Secretary of Education, to be held before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee on Tuesday, January 13.
During the presidential campaign, FairTest paid close attention to the candidates whenever they addressed No Child Left Behind. It will be some time before President-Elect Barack Obama takes action that will flesh out the mostly vague statements he made while campaigning, and even longer before anything specific happens with the federal education law. In the meantime, here is a compilation of his comments on NCLB from his web site and the campaign trail.
Supporters of the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law use many arguments to defend the controversial law. The strongest-sounding arguments have little to do with the law’s actual provisions, while others are simply false. We have prepared this fact sheet to help people reply to the various claims made in defense of NCLB; sort, pick and adapt the points you need.
States and districts should not bar students from graduating based solely on standardized test scores. The Standards on Educational and Psychological Testing of the American Psychological Association, American Educational Research Association and National Council on Measurement in Education states that a major decision about a student should not be made "on the basis of a single test score." Dozens of educational and civil rights organizations join FairTest in endorsing this basic principle and opposing high-stakes graduation exams.