State Ed raises the bar on testing

OXFORD – Local districts are calling into question the fairness of a decision by the New York State Education Department to change the cut scores on state math and English assessments which have already been administered.

Scores from the exams, which were administered across to students in grades 3 through 8 this spring, are due to be released next week. But on Monday, SED announced they were raising the bar on those tests. As a result, students will need to score higher than they have in the past to obtain “proficiency” level.

Norwich Superintendent Gerard O’Sullivan expressed frustration over the state’s decision to “change the bar” at this late in the game during the district’s board of education meeting on Monday.

“It’s not fair to the staff, it’s not fair to the community and it’s not fair to the students,” he said.

The topic was also discussed last night in Oxford, where Superintendent Randy Squier suggested the state was “putting the cart before the horse,” and raising the cut scores to “create a sense of urgency” for other changes coming down the pike as Commissioner David Steiner follows through with his promise to increase the rigor of education in New York.

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