Kans. BOE Discusses Proficiency Standards

Lauren Williams's picture
Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Kansas State Board of Education heard testimony Tuesday on how the state determines whether students meet standards on state tests in subjects like math and reading.

The discussion centered on cut scores — the scores used to categorize students into various levels of achievement on the annual tests.

Board of education member Walt Chappell, who requested the discussion, has expressed repeated concern that Kansas lowered cut scores during the past decade, giving the appearance that more students meet standards in math and reading. Chappell said students who meet standards according to the state tests aren’t necessarily ready for college or the workplace, meaning that Kansas needs to set the bar higher.

The board invited Neal Kingston, director of the Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation at The University of Kansas, to explain how cut scores are determined. The Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation designs Kansas’ state assessments.

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