Friday, July 10, 2015

Who Opted Out of the SBAC in Washington State?

The Seattle Times is reporting that it was NOT just 11th graders in SPS opting out, early state figures show. 

Almost half of SPS 11th graders did not take the test.  What's interesting is that Issaquah had 82% of their 11th graders saying no followed by Enumclaw at 78, followed by Snoqualmie Valley at 75%.
The highest?  Bainbridge Island with 90%.  (High participation in taking the test was seen in Bellevue, Renton, Tacoma and Spokane.)

The overall number for the state was about 27% for 11th graders but OSPI believes that number could climb when they finally release the testing results sometime next month.  Only 5% of 3-8th graders opted out but I'm sure that will change next spring. (Bainbridge had the highest opt-out rate for this group at 20%).

I find these results interesting because it isn't just wealthy white school districts as has been said about other places in the nation. Hmm.

The Times has a great quote from the state deputy superintendent who saying the refusals were based on confusion over the tests.
"Everybody is afraid of the unknown, so there's been some lashing out against it," Mendoza said.  
There's nothing like saying adults are scared of testing. It's not fear - it's concern, it's evidence from other states out ahead of us in the use of the test and it's overtesting. But sure, make it about fear which is what the ed reform crowd likes to frequently say on any number of issues.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mendoza thinks it's about fear. I think it's about child exploitation.

David Edelman

Po3 said...

The fear statement popped out at me also. So tone deaf especially when followed by a concisely articulated reason why a student opted out.

Implementing tests to graduate spring of 11th grade is just insane.

These people need to get out more.



Anonymous said...

Here are some interesting questions about the SBAC from EduRearcher.

David Edelman

Anonymous said...

The only thing we have to fear are stupid tests, or something like that.

-NNNCr

Anonymous said...

I think "opting out" is about resistance to an unfair system. A system which is based on deception. Kids can often recognize nonsense when adults are spewing it.

Consider the following as only a small part of defects in "the system":

1) .. 8th grade MSP math results have found consistently that 25% of students score at level 1. This is consistent over several years.

2) .. Student skills do not make miraculous increases during high school.

3) .. The state of Washington requires 3 math credits to graduate from high school.
----- Algebra, and Geometry
----- Algebra II or an approved course in place of Algebra II

4) .. In High School instead of being offered courses that would improve day to day necessary math skills and thinking, those relatively unskilled students (the 25%) are pushed through three or more courses of watered down math to fulfill an absurd State requirement. ((The title of the course is not Algebra II for the mathematically unskilled))

5) .. When students are unable to pass End of Course assessments, they are placed into collection of evidence classes to produce a portfolio of material which substitutes for actual mathematical skill. HB 2214 references the expense of this Collection of Evidence process and will end the COE.

{{ Note: Even though HB 2214 is ending some of this nonsense by eliminating the Collection of Evidence, HB 2214 fails to address the course titles and content for the required 3 years of math.}}

I graduated from Bellarmine High School in Tacoma, WA.
There were four different High School diplomas awarded:
General, Scientific, Classical, Honor Classical
These classification were based on the courses taken and passed by students.

Instead of requiring faking, the state should adopt a system with differing diplomas.
The General diploma should require actual Algebra I competence. Then the members of the 8th grade well below standards in math would have an opportunity to really learn some math in high school and develop skills rather than just receive a fake diploma.
High Schools could be restructured around meeting the needs of students rather than forcing them into State approved slots.

Rather WA State will have the SBAC math assessment which is unproven, unreliable, and still under development. CCSS Geometry standards are unique in that they resemble the Geometry attempt tried in the 1970s in the Soviet Union, which was abandon after about 6 years.

Resistance to this unfair system is certainly needed

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

I am interested in what Chad Magendanz thinks about the fact that his district had one of the highest opt out rates. He used to be on the Issaquah school board. His kids are in that district. I wonder if they opted out.

HP

Anonymous said...

David Edelman -- Thanks for the link above to EduResearcher on SBAC.

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

Our school webpage doesn't seem to contain staff listings anymore -- is that part of the updating going on this summer?

Kelso

Melissa Westbrook said...

HP, I was wondering that as well.

Kelso, I find the district website useless. I can see the most recent Board minutes but not from three months ago. It's very maddening.

Patrick said...

One suspects it's maddening on purpose. Back about six years ago, there were departmental org charts for downtown offices, and you could look up those individuals and find their email addresses. (Not that they'd necessarily answer, but...)
Now that's long gone.