August 11, 2013

A Look at ELL Performance So Far on Common-Core-Aligned Tests


A Look at ELL Performance So Far on Common-Core-Aligned Tests
By Lesli A. Maxwell
August 9, 2013

Student performance on New York's new common-core-aligned tests was weak across the board, as results released earlier this week confirmed the low expectations that education officials in that state had been steeling the public for over the last several months.

Statewide, the proficiency rates in English/language arts sank from 55.1 percent on the non-common-core-aligned exams from the 2011-12 school year, to 31.1 percent on the common-core-aligned tests given this past spring. In math, the proficiency rates fell from 64.8 percent to 31 percent.

Because of their lack of fluency, of course, English-learners' proficiency rates are always considerably lower than their peers who are native speakers of the language. But do the very low ELL scores on the new common-core-aligned tests provide any early-stage insight into how well teachers, who must change their practice considerably to teach the common standards, are being additionally prepared to support their non-English-proficient students?

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