Tuesday, January 26, 2021

January Board of Ed: competency determination for class of 2021

 class of 2021 in reading and math
Curtin: last spring, graduates of '20, and science through class of 2023 modified
plan had been for administration of 2021 in ELA and math in January
waiting to see what trajectory of virus was coming out of winter break "primarily from a safety concern"
announcement was made "to postpone" as it is the Board's decision on competency determination (aka if the Board votes 'no' they need another option)
"we are not providing these students with a diploma" as that is a local determination
the competency determination is the piece that is the state's part
note this is not automatic: last year, only about 2/3rds of seniors earned it
"it is not a given"

Hills: based on history, what percent of students would have ended up passing ordinarily?
Curtin: "it is not high"
fading in and out
over 92% of students have earned it; "need to offer an alternative pathway, given that we will not be offering" the test
Hills: the broader MCAS issue "for me" has nothing to do with this issue

Morton: commend department in getting 92% of students having passed it already

motion, second

Moriarty: "these loosening of standards always concern me a great deal" don't think it helps students
"always feel this is taking away from them"
lessens diploma 
do more for these students who aren't taking and passing MCAS
"I hate anything that loosens this system; I don't think it's already strong enough to begin with"
have to accept realities
"I am going to vote for this, but I am deeply sorry to do this; I did not come here to lower standards."
Riley: will discuss more opportunities at February meeting

ACCESS testing: (back to Curtin)
deadline extended out to May 20: hope is there will be more students coming to school
"our intention around the use of the data this year is for diagnostic value"
ACCESS at core is diagnostic test: have looked for federal government about accountability
intent is to not use it in bulk, but to use it as a diagnostic test
"it is a federally required test"
"unless that changes, that federal requirement exists"
get data into hands of educators so they can think about programming
test is also required for a student to exit English learning programs

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