Thursday, November 19, 2015

Update on State Assessments

Report of the Superintendent tonight is an update on state assessments (thus, PARCC results, as well as what we're doing next)
Rodrigues: last Tuesday, PARCC results were released statewide
23 of 39 schools in grades 3-8 gave PARCC
5 gave it on computers
those schools that gave PARCC are held harmless this year
Perda: a bit of a tough year for the district to report out
"tough to get a feel for how the district has been doing"
grade 10: 81% proficient or above on MCAS and so on down through grades
"that's about half of our kids taking the MCAS"
on PARCC there are five performance levels
"one of the first things you can that it's a much harder bar...much more difficult than MCAS, and I think the results show that"
equipercentile linking: took an analysis
so there are some comparable measures across both measures
CPI is crosswalked across both tests, allowing us to make districts and school performance over time
for ELA "the results are very encouraging"
improvements across the board in every grade level
"more kids are moving towards proficiency over time"
for math grade 10 MCAS, 58% proficient or above
in math CPI negative one year changes in grades 3,4,6
otherwise positive changes
was no science PARCC: MCAS science
solid five year growth in science in CPI across the grades
5 schools had median SGP in ELA across the grades that were above target (60 or higher) while 10 did so in math (in MCAS)
6 schools that had median SGP in ELA across grades that were above target while 2 did in math
and what is up next?
Rodrigues: had a phone conference with DESE to confirm some of the details of how this will work for Worcester
Massachusetts will develop MCAS 2.0 for spring 2017: will have MCAS questions, PARCC questions, and additional questions
schools that did PARCC will stay with PARCC; schools that did MCAS can pick
schools that do PARCC in spring 2016 will be held harmless (except for Level 4 schools); statewide in 2017 with regards to test scores
will be using same method as before, talking to schools for their input to see if they want to switch to PARCC, deadline of December 18

Monfredo: will be considering keyboarding instruction?
Rodrigues: has been circulated around, especially grade 3, have discussed, don't yet have a plan
is the level of comfort of a lower grade student able to be successful
Monfredo: what is the cost to the school department?
Rodrigues: State provided test, training for teachers and personnel
have to pay attention to things like headphone costs
Foley: numbers may reflect improvement here, but different students over time
Perda: agrees
Foley: being judged on different groups of students over time
worried about familiarity of students with technology
will tests have a time limit?
Rodrigues: subcommittees will work on these issues, all will have minor or major change for next generation
logistics to be ready to be fully ready for technology moving forward
Foley: do MAP but much shorter time frame
worry that time constraint may hurt additional test scores in Worcester and across the state
O'Connell: interested in areas where we struggled a bit
while can't necessarily compare how students are doing from year to year
data, while generalized, not broken out by schools
look at school performance or broken out by questions; particular areas of instruction that we may need to pursue more agressively
Perda: happy to share at standing committee
Rodrigues: PARCC doesn't give us the same item analysis as MCAS
have information through consortium, but haven't been able to share with us
state is working on that
"math performance was very weak this year, but it was weak statewide"
looking at what the issues about grade 7 particularly that didn't make much movement this year
O'Connell do we have computer ability to be ready?
Rodrigues: have been analysing at this time
not just number of computers but the grouping of test taking
January have ACCESS test will be completely computer based
looking at logistics of taking ACCESS test; working with Bob Walton in IT
have to pay attention to the goal the department has set for 2019 of everything being computer-based
O'Connell: will we be switching kids twice if they're taking MCAS now, then PARCC, then MCAS 2.0
Rodrigues: but those who do MCAS this spring will be a change, too, due to PARCC questions being answered
either path you take, there are changes
"no matter which path you take" there will be changes
Novick: echo concern on keyboarding and technology, query on "except for Level 4" in 2015-16 with a few reflections on the Board of Ed meeting (like that "except Level 4" wasn't in what the Board passed)
Biancheria: additional supplies, after school programs, and summer programs tied into MCAS
this spring, how is the decision going to be made on which schools are doing PARCC or MCAS
Rodrigues: schools will have a large voice in this process
Biancheria: parents still opt out?
Rodrigues: state says there is no opt out, does break testing record of student, did have some of that happen last year
"if we have a parent's request, we will honor that"
Biancheria: five years on science?
at least
Biancheria: concerned that we have a couple of years here that we're going to be going back and forth
Ramirez: any Gateway district looking at the impact of all of the exams at the local level?
Rodrigues: continue to look at the subgroups, waiting to see what that looks like and see how those subgroups did
accountability groups released soon
"that will depict whether that was PARCC or MCAS"

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