About one-fifth of New York students in April did not take state examinations for grades 3 through 8 in English-language arts and math, while the students that did made “incremental” progress overall in their scores, the Department of Education on Wednesday announced.
The results, released earlier this morning, showed 31.3 percent of students had “proficient” scores on the ELA examinations, while 38.1 percent had proficient results on the math tests.
Nevertheless, the opt-out movement did show a spike in the number of students not taking the test. In 2014, only about 5 percent did not take the test. This year, the percentage grew to 20 percent, with some school districts reporting opt-out rates as high as 89 percent.
Reisman reports that reformers like StudentsFirstNY are using the test scores as proof positive for why the state needs to “dramatically improve teacher quality.”
Unstated by StudentsFirstNY is that NYSED sets the passing scores of the state tests based upon political calculations.
They decided that 70% would fail the new Common Core state tests when they were rolled out a few years ago and the state would see "incremental" progress in the years since - and lo and behold, that's what has happened.
One area where we have seen definite progress is in the increase in opt outs - from 5% to 20%.
NYSED Commissioner Elia has promised "ramifications" for the Opt Out movement.
We shall see soon what those ramifications will be.