Virginia's Attempt to Close the Performance Gap in Education

Lauren Williams's picture
Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Earlier this year, Virginia was given a waiver from the "No Child Left Behind" mandate. Now, parents are waiting to see how Virginia educators are going to insure that students will be competent in reading and math.Under the NCLB law, states were expected to have all students proficient in math and reading skills by 2014. Virginia succeeded in overcoming this requirement with a plan that allowed for getting students competent using a modified plan.

Educators have been busy, as the new math tests introduced in 2009 have shown. Last year, the scores on the tougher test showed an average 58 percent pass rate. Rather than saying the scores were disheartening, educators have pointed out the tests show where further work needs to be done.

Based on this premise, Virginia has come up with something called the Annual Measurable Objectives (AMO's). The AMO's are based on reading and math scores from previous years. The whole idea was to raise the test scores of students in lower performing schools.

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