From the article:
"Researchers spent two to three days at six Washington high schools, where they observed classes and interviewed parents, students, teachers and principals. Although their sample was small, they said they chose schools they think are representative of the state's high schools as a whole.
Teachers echoed many of the same old criticisms of the WASL — it's too long, the results are confusing and don't come back in time — but they also credited the WASL with improving students' writing and reasoning skills.
They pointed favorably to its "extended response" questions, which are to be eliminated from new exams favored by Randy Dorn, the new state superintendent of public instruction who campaigned to replace the WASL."
"Of the three states the center has studied, Washington was the only one where teachers mentioned that a high-stakes test such as the WASL has improved student learning, said Deepa Srikantaiah, the study's main author. And the study says about 80 percent of teachers said they'd rather see the WASL improved than replaced.
The state's largest teachers union disputes that finding. In the Washington Education Association's survey, 75 percent of teachers said they wanted the WASL replaced, said spokesman Rich Wood."
First, except for actual opponents of assessments, no one said the WASL was all bad. But this study seems short on time and the number of schools to be called a study. And, I would agree with the WEA's survey over this one. 80% said it improved student learning? I find that hard to believe but I'd have to see how the question was phrased.
One odd thing about the study that I hadn't seen before is that they gave each school and district a fake name. There's Honeycrisp High in the Microsoft School district, Jonagold high in the Nordstrom district. Maybe the teachers wouldn't talk unless the union didn't know which teachers participated.
The study reads as something as a backlash against Superintendent Dorn's efforts to reform the WASL.