The meeting of the Education Assessment and Accountability Review Subcommittee was held on Tuesday, July 31, 2007, at 10:00 AM, in Room 131 of the Capitol Annex. Senator Jack Westwood, Co-Chair, called the meeting to order, and the secretary called the roll.
Guests: Clyde Caudill, Jefferson County Public Schools and Kentucky Association of School Administrators.
LRC Staff: Sandy Deaton, Audrey Carr, Janet Stevens, Jacinta Manning, and Lisa Moore.
Senator Westwood asked for a motion to approve the minutes from the June 18, 2007 meeting. Representative Marzian made the motion to approve the minutes and Representative Rasche seconded the motion. The motion was approved by voice vote.
Senator Westwood said the Education Assessment and Accountability Review Subcommittee (EAARS) discussed administrative regulation 703 KAR 5:020 in a meeting in March, 2007. The administrative regulation established the formula for determining school accountability. He said the subcommittee concluded in that meeting that they did not support the removal of the norm-referenced test (NRT) from the elementary school level as the removal does not conform with KRS 153.6453. He said the subcommittee members further believed that the statute requires the NRT at the elementary and middle school levels to be included in the Commonwealth Accountability Testing System.
Senator Westwood said the subcommittee members sent a letter to Mr. Keith Travis, Chair, Kentucky Board of Education (KBE), to voice their concerns about 703 KAR 5:020 and to ask the board to reconsider its decision to remove the NRT from the elementary school level. He welcomed Mr. Travis, Ms. Eleanor Mills, Chair, School Curriculum, Assessment and Accountability Council (SCAAC), and Mr. Kevin Noland, Interim Commissioner, Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) to discuss their response to the letter and any other comments about the issue.
Mr. Travis said the KBE received the letter and has taken due consideration of the members' feelings. He said the KBE is also very concerned about the intent of 703 KAR 5:020 and it is an agenda item for the board's next meeting. He said the KBE is receptive to the subcommittee's comments and wants to be responsive and do what is best for the children of Kentucky.
Ms. Mills said SCAAC representation varies from board members to parents and family members as well as teachers and administrators. She said schools are working very hard to close the achievement gaps and help students reach proficiency. SCAAC is committed to being open and responsive and believes that NRT's can help with diagnostic testing and help to determine what schools are measuring.
Mr. Noland said the current administrative regulation allows each school to choose its own NRT and this is the recommendation from SCAAC as well. One reason SCAAC recommended schools choose their own NRT is because schools are already doing this and the goal is to try and minimize the amount of testing. He also said the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act requires additional testing by adding the assessment of math and reading at grades three through eight. He noted the results of the assessments are reported publicly and discussed with parents.
Mr. Noland said the last EAARS meeting discussion included not only whether to use one uniform NRT testing in the elementary schools across Kentucky, but whether to include the results in the accountability system, and whether to include the middle school EXPLORE test in the state accountability system. He said KDE will be seeking the National Technical Advisory Panel on Assessment and Accountability's (NTAPPA) opinion at their next meeting in September.
Mr. Noland said early feedback from school districts include reports that schools have already been making changes to incorporate the PLAN, EXPLORE, and the math and reading assessments in grades three through eight, along with federal requirements of adding the alternative portfolio in grades three through eight. School districts have asked that KBE not change the rules during the middle of a biennial accountability period, but allow time for a request for proposal (RFP) to be mailed and provide training with full implementation for the spring of 2009, which is the first year of the new accountability period. This gives schools an adequate amount of time to adjust to the new changes.
Ms. Mills said immediate data is critical for short and long-term decision making. She said reading and math grants awarded to schools require additional testing and many schools test for diagnostics up to three times a year. She said the results from the testing are reported to parents three times a year as well. She emphasized that Kentucky needs to focus on what information it is assessing and what it is evaluating and why.
Senator Westwood said the assessments being administered need to have useful results and students who are not performing well should receive assistance, or be allowed to transfer to another school that is performing. He said timeliness and promptness of obtaining assessment results is extremely important and the assessments should drive the curriculum.
Senator Westwood asked Mr. Travis if KRS 158.6453 refers to a single test administered to the entire state or is it a local school district decision. Mr. Travis said the KBE is trying to bring the differences around the statute into alignment. He said the KBE is seeking advice from EAARS, SCAAC, and NTAPAA and the goal is to consolidate the advice from all the entities into a plan that will work for Kentucky.
Senator Westwood said EAARS believes that administering multiple tests does not provide the information needed to make decisions and evaluate student progress. He said if Kentucky waits to implement the assessment until 2009, this is only five years away from 2014. Mr. Travis said Kentucky's target for all students reaching proficiency should actually be 2013 because by waiting until 2014, the state will miss the target date. He also said Kentucky needs to be planning for the future after 2014 and where students should be going after reaching proficiency levels.
Mr. Travis said some school districts are facing unique situations that are arising as they are approaching proficiency. He said local control is an extremely important virtue and has been a part of the Kentucky Education Reform Act. However, best practices and standardized tests and other issues are being raised. There are currently eleven different testing models being used in elementary schools across Kentucky. He said many of the tests are already purchased and contracts have been awarded to testing companies. School districts have complained of sending schools into turmoil when changes are made abruptly without time to plan.
Senator Westwood said a conference call was being placed to Dr. Norman L. Webb from the University of Wisconsin-Madison to discuss the analysis of the match between the ACT and the Kentucky Core Content for Assessment. He also introduced Ms. Rhonda Sims, KDE, who presented at the testimony table.
Ms. Sims said Senate Bill 130 requires the KDE to periodically do alignment studies comparing standards in reading, math, and science with the standards in the assessment. She said this process had begun with a competitive RFP seeking a vendor to conduct an independent alignment that does not involve staff in the KDE. She said through the RFP process, the contract was awarded to Dr. Norman Webb and his resume is included in the members' meeting folders. He has conducted over 40 national alignment studies and uses a model called "The Webb Model," which is a very respected national approach to doing alignment and is often used as states move through the peer review process to have their assessment systems approved for the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) reporting requirements. She said Dr. Webb's model provides an analysis of the degree at which there is an intersection between assessments and the content standards, and does both using a qualitative manner using the judgments of experts and providing a quantified coding of that alignment.
Senator Westwood introduced Dr. Webb and said members have a copy of Dr. Webb's presentation in their folders. Dr. Webb gave an overview of the process Kentucky went through in the alignment study and the findings derived from the study. He said the alignment process consisted of: 1) identifying standards and assessments; 2) selection of six to eight reviewers and content experts; 3) training reviewers on Depth of Knowledge (DOK) levels; 4) coding DOK levels of the standards and objectives; and 5) coding DOK levels and corresponding objectives of assessment items.
Dr. Webb said the specific criteria for content focus is categorized in four categories. They are: categorical concurrence; depth-of-knowledge consistency; range-of-knowledge correspondence; and balance of representation. He described the four levels of DOK and said level four, which is extended thinking, is rarely on assessments. He also described several tables in the handout which is located in the meeting folder in the Legislative Research Commission (LRC) library.
Dr. Webb said the results showed that the Kentucky Core Content Test (KCCT) and the ACT were partially aligned. The ACT had an adequate number of items for four of the five standards, but there is not a large amount of items in data analysis and probability. He said science was not very aligned because the ACT test primarily looks at the scientific process and how students can graph and interpret graphs, while the KCCT covers more content.
Senator Westwood asked if DOK could be assessed with multiple choice questions or on-demand writing questions. Dr. Webb said DOK is independent of how it is assessed and is used as a set of rules to try and look at how complex an item is. He said all DOK level questions can be assessed using multiple choice questions, but level three questions are very rare because students have to engage in some sort of reasoning activity and that is hard to measure using a multiple choice item, but it can be done.
Senator Westwood asked if the KCCT test has a greater DOK or a higher number of level two and three questions than the ACT. Dr. Webb said yes. Senator Westwood said that is puzzling to him because the KCCT scores reflect better understanding of DOK questions than the ACT scores. Dr. Webb said that is possible because the KCCT is designed to test for Kentucky's standards, however the ACT is designed for a different purpose, which is to predict how students will perform at the postsecondary level.
Senator Kelly asked if the DOK questions for Kentucky are determined by the KDE. Dr. Webb said they are determined by the KDE through a specific process. Senator Kelly asked him to explain his comment that Kentucky's assessment questions utilized more high level questions in comparison to other states. Dr. Webb said Kentucky designs its questions so that the highest expectation within a standard is assessed, which is a little higher compared to other states. He said there are more level three DOK items in Kentucky's assessments than in other states as well. Senator Kelly commented that level three items are hard to measure with multiple choice questions which may contribute to the misalignment with the ACT. Dr. Webb gave an in-depth example using mathematics as the subject.
Senator Kelly said feedback has been received from the field that teachers need and want diagnostic information for planning curriculum and lesson plans. He said one reason students may not test well in reasoning and analysis could be that they had a lack of content knowledge, and if content knowledge is not measured, teachers have no way of knowing what is giving the students problems.
Dr. Webb said one reason why students do not perform well in reasoning and analysis is because they are lacking some of the basic skills, but it is very hard for one test to do everything, particularly tests that provide diagnostic information as well as assess for summative information, which is how well the student is actually performing.
Senator Kelly asked if testing level one and two was considered more diagnostic, while testing level three is considered more summative. Dr. Webb said he would not say that because a distribution of the levels is desired, and there is no exact distribution, it is a judgment call.
Senator Kelly asked what the ACT would predict in the area of mathematics. Dr. Webb said it is a predictor of how students will perform in math during their first year of college. Senator Kelly asked if it was based on the level of content knowledge or reasoning skills the student had obtained or would it be just based on cognitive skills that the student may have. Dr. Webb said it is based upon studies that look at scores of their particular test and then look at how students perform who took that test and then statistical models are utilized to determine what levels are needed to be successful in college.
Representative Rasche discussed word problems and DOK questions. He said DOK can be seen either as an interpretation for application or a higher level of manipulation of mathematics. He asked if the DOK level three questions tend to lean more towards practical application or is it not related at all.
Dr. Webb said there is some relationship as level three questions require students to engage in reasoning and usually this is not measured with a word problem where there is direct translation. He said a level three word problem would be one where there could possibly be multiple answers and the student would have to justify his or her answer.
Senator Kelly asked if the KDE set the standards for the DOK questions in level three as either a ceiling or a floor. Dr. Webb said he cannot say whether there is a particular ceiling or a floor, it is a judgment. He thinks there should be a progression over time, and that more level one questions should be in place in earlier grades and decrease as a student goes into higher grades. He said there is no particular ceiling or no particular floor. He would be cautious however, as to setting standards too high as the state is ultimately held accountable to those standards.
Representative Moberly asked what causes the phenomena of a situation where students score higher state scores than ACT scores even though there is a higher DOK on the state test. For example, why would Kentucky students score higher on the Commonwealth Accountability Testing System (CATS) test than on the ACT? Dr. Webb said part of this is the opportunity to learn. He said teachers have been given the standards and teach towards those particular standards and students are exposed to those items.
Representative Moberly asked if student scores on the ACT could be improved if the Council on Postsecondary Education (CPE) and elementary and secondary staff communicated more. Dr. Webb said this is called vertical alignment, and it is very important. He believes it is critical for the CPE to help determine the standards in the elementary and secondary schools.
Ms. Sims provided clarification on the KDE and placing DOK on Kentucky's standards. She said this was part of the standard setting process involving Kentucky teachers and looking at what the ceiling was and the highest level of how the concept is assessed.
Senator Kelly asked what time in the process were the DOK levels assigned to the items. Ms. Sims said nearly from the beginning, but she did not work as closely with the revision of the Kentucky Core Content, which is the standards being referred to, as did the Office of Curriculum in KDE.
Senator Kelly said Dr. Webb tried to distinguish the difference between cognitive level and DOK. Ms. Sims said DOK is used by Dr. Webb as an evaluation of what the item is asking the student to do. Ms. Sims said the only language used with teachers during this process was DOK.
Ms. Sims introduced Ms. Nancy LaCount, Office of Teaching and Learning, which was the primary group that worked through the revision of the core content for assessment. Ms. LaCount said there were teacher teams that included eight teachers per grade level for each content area. She said the core content was taken to the content advisory committees who provided feedback as to the appropriateness of the DOK levels. Senator Kelly asked when the DOK levels were assigned. Ms. LaCount said they were recommended to the NTAPAA in March, 2005, the KBE reviewed in April, 2005, and DOK was included in May, 2005, in the draft for public posting.
Senator Kelly asked if the content advisory committee actually assigned the DOK levels to the items. Ms. LaCount said there was some initial work done internally with the KDE staff after receiving in-depth training on what DOK meant. She said recommendations were then sent out to small groups, information was collected, and revisions were made. Senator Kelly asked if KDE staff assigned the level to each of these items. Ms. LaCount said yes, but it was verified by the content advisory committees to confirm the levels or make changes.
Representative Moberly asked to what extent postsecondary was involved in setting the standards for core content. Ms. LaCount said different content advisory committees included higher education staff at different points, and a survey was conducted with postsecondary input collected. Mr. Michael Miller, KDE, said a key way recommendations were included from postsecondary education was through incorporating the American Diploma Project benchmarks into the revisions of the standards.
Representative Moberly asked what the disconnect is between Kentucky's standards and the remediation levels of students in higher education. He asked Mr. Noland and Mr. Travis where the dialogue between the KBE, KDE, and CPE has been as he sees a failure to communicate and wants to know when this is going to change.
Mr. Noland said the KDE has worked with the CPE through the Educational Development Taskforce on alignment and coordinating the expectations. He also said the KDE works with postsecondary education as they amend their regulation on entry level ACT scores that will trigger remediation.
Representative Moberly said this is a critical issue and dialogue needs to occur between these entities. He told Mr. Travis that the KBE and CPE are going to have to show some accountability on these issues or current members need to be replaced with new ones who can get the job done.
Senator Winters asked if Kentucky compared its number of level three DOK questions to the amount that others states use. Ms. LaCount said the KDE did look at other states along with national standards and models. She also said test specifications will balance out the distribution between level one, two, and three questions.
Senator Winters asked if Kentucky's final product reflects fairly and accurately the input and modifications received from the survey group. Mr. Miller responded that Kentucky has added some standards around Algebra based upon the input received from organizations such as the American Diploma Project. He also said Kentucky's standards may appear to be higher than other states because of recent alignment work to align with 21st century skills that some other states might not have yet addressed.
Senator Winters said it seems that there should be a floating DOK applicable to the various spectrums of mathematics study. He is passionate that students receive the very best experience in school, and while standards should be high, he does not want students to lose the basic skills. He asked if Kentucky was treating every age level fairly with DOK questions.
Ms. LaCount said opportunity to learn and course alignment with state standards, as well as high standards in the classroom, should ensure that all students have the basic skills to learn. She said staff needs additional professional development and guidance from higher education in order to ensure students meet the standards.
Senator Winters said he is looking forward to hearing a report on the progress of end-of-course exams in the Interim Joint Committee Meeting on Education. Ms. Sims said Algebra II is being piloted in the spring of 2008 and an RFP has been issued for Algebra I and Geometry, and are currently being evaluated. Senator Winters said he looks forward to the day that KDE's report is so positive on end-of-course exams that Kentucky can focus its attention to higher education.
Senator Kelly asked about the availability of early intervention programs for students who need extra help. He said research shows that twenty percent of students in the classroom will need additional assistance in reading, which equates to about 9,000 students per year.
Ms. LaCount said there are more children that exhibit a need for intervention than the grant can afford to pay for. Senator Kelly said it is his goal that all students receive early intervention in reading and math who need it and he believes that Chairman Moberly shares the same goal. He wants the KDE to focus more on the level of penetration of service with the trained teachers and the diagnosis, and determine what schools are not following the appropriate strategy. Ms. LaCount said they would get the information together.
Senator Kelly referred to the memorandum in the meeting folder from Dr. Bob Sexton, Executive Director, Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence, and said one of his criticisms on the over reliance of the ACT is that it does not test biology, but he noted that Dr. Webb's handout says that biological science is one of the better aligned science subjects. He was curious if there were other entities stating that the ACT does not test biology, or if Dr. Webb's information is inaccurate.
Ms. LaCount said science in Kentucky has a very strong focus on content and application. She said the ACT science may match on topic, but it is more concerned on looking at process in regards to science. Senator Kelly said clearly the ACT does test biology, and asked if physics and chemistry were covered in CATS. Ms. LaCount said physics and chemistry are tested in CATS at the level in which they are in the core content. Senator Kelly asked if calculus was covered in CATS. Mr. Miller said calculus is not covered by the CATS test because it is not a requirement for high school graduation.
Representative Rasche asked if comparisons have been made between how students score on math on the CATS test if they score at the remediation level in math on the ACT. Ms. LaCount said there has been some research work with the ACT and KCCT but she did not have the data. Representative Rasche is wondering to what degree Kentucky has students doing acceptably on CATS and not doing acceptably on the ACT. Ms. LaCount said that would be beneficial research to get those numbers. Mr. Miller said that 60 percent of Kentucky high school students are not scoring proficiently on the high school KCCT, which is very similar to the number of students who enter postsecondary education and need remediation. Representative Rasche said timing of the tests and how recently students had completed a math course could factor into scores as well.
Senator Kelly asked if there were new data on the PLAN and EXPLORE from the EPAS system that would facilitate the comparisons Representative Rasche was discussing. Ms. Sims said those comparisons can easily be made because there is a full administration of PLAN and EXPLORE from last fall. Senator Kelly asked how soon the data could be available. Ms. Sims said she will check with the data processing group, but will get Senator Kelly a date when the information can be provided.
Senator Westwood asked if Ms. Sims was implying that the PLAN and EXPLORE results were not available. Ms. Sims said that the results were available, she was referring to the specific data comparisons that Senator Kelly mentioned.
Senator Westwood asked how many schools have taken advantage of looking at the report of the PLAN and EXPLORE test results. He said one of the most important pieces of Senate Bill 130 is the idea that information can be disseminated to students, parents, and the school systems quickly in order to identify students who are behind and provide remediation. He asked if all schools had received a copy of how their individual school or district was doing. Ms. Sims said yes, all schools received both school-based reports and individual student reports as part of the contract agreement with PLAN and EXPLORE. She said there was also a series of workshops provided in January, 2007, to give schools training on how to interpret and utilize the results as these reports were very new to some schools. Senator Westwood said the results that he saw portrayed a very grim picture, particularly in students making progress in math and science areas.
Senator Westwood introduced Mr. Steve Newman, Professor of Mathematics, Northern Kentucky University, who gave an analysis of the depth of knowledge in the Kentucky Core Content for Assessment, curriculum alignment, and successful implementation of Senate Bill 130. Dr. Newman provided the members with a paper that is in the meeting folder located in the LRC library.
Dr. Newman presented his paper and recommended that the subcommittee encourage the KBE and the KDE to proceed with deliberate speed with full implementation of Senate Bill 130 beginning in the 2008-2009 school year. He said it is imperative that the framework for the testing program be decided as soon as possible, long before the first administration of the ACT in 2008.
Dr. Newman said the KCCT test should be used to augment the ACT as specified in Senate Bill 130 when the content areas between the two tests do not align. For example, the Data Analysis and Probability subdomain would likely need to be augmented by KCCT questions. There is no reason to augment the Algebraic Thinking subdomain since all four ACT tests examined were fully aligned with core content standards. The other three subdomains showed good alignment as well and do not need to be augmented.
Dr. Newman said the ACT science assessment is a reasoning test, not a content test. Therefore, it makes sense to augment the ACT science test with KCCT science content items as is done in Illinois and Michigan. He said that Illinois and Michigan are the only other states currently using the ACT as the primary state assessment for accountability purposes, although several other states are considering it.
Dr. Newman said if the decision is made to augment the ACT with KCCT items corresponding to the DOK level of each core content standard, the KCCT would become a longer, more difficult, more expensive, and more time consuming. There would be significant duplication, with many topics being assessed by both the ACT and the KCCT. He said the testing program is already one of the most complex in the nation, and would became much more complex if this strategy is utilized. He said that this type of augmentation would eliminate any hope of successfully implementing Senate Bill 130 and should be rejected.
Dr. Newman urged the subcommittee and KBE members to reject current KDE plans to obtain three versions of the ACT assessment (one for regular administration, one for makeup, and one for students receiving accommodations) 13 months prior to administration of the test so that different KCCT tests can be developed each year based on the core content standards consistently covered by the three tests. He said the ACT test is stable from version to version and year to year. ACT is also extremely careful about the security of the test. He said there is no reason to do an alignment study each and every year and design a different KCCT accordingly. The alignment report just completed should suffice to design the necessary KCCT questions and be used to augment the ACT.
Dr. Newman summarized by saying that full implementation of Senate Bill 130 will be immensely helpful in focusing the curriculum on the essential skills and concepts students need to advance from middle school to high school and from high school to postsecondary education and work. He said implementation should be rushed and Kentucky should not wait until after 2008.
Senator Kelly thanked Dr. Newman for his citizen involvement in the legislative process. He clarified that Dr. Newman was recommending that the ACT should not be augmented with a KCCT supplement unless there is an area that the ACT is not testing, and if that is the case, to supplement with a DOK level three critical thinking question. Dr. Newman agreed.
Representative Rasche asked Dr. Newman for what the ACT assessment and data analysis would be sufficient. Dr. Newman said it would be sufficient for full alignment as described in Senate Bill 130. Representative Rasche asked for a description of data analysis. Dr. Newman said data analysis is taking different samples of data and analyzing the data, but from a postsecondary education point of view, the high school coverage of data analysis is relatively superficial compared with Algebra and Geometry.
Representative Rasche said that the ACT is an indicator of how well a student knows mathematics in a postsecondary situation. He said the problem is that Kentucky should have more in mind for high school students than just college preparation, as only 15 percent of incoming freshman go on to attend college, leaving us with 85 percent of students to prepare them for life after high school.
Dr. Newman said that since 1990, the same skills needed for college are the same needed for the skilled workforce and for success in life and the world. He feels if Kentucky can raise expectations for students to ACT levels, remediation rates will go down.
Representative Rasche said students need to learn statistics and other skill sets in high school because the majority of people never learn this in postsecondary education. Dr. Newman said the word statistics was appropriately deleted from the core content and there has never been a remedial class in data analysis and probability in the nation. This is not a problem area for colleges as is Algebra.
Senator Westwood said better statistical applications should be taught in high school, possibly in the senior year which is largely wasted. He also said the senior year could be reserved for remediation classes as well.
Senator Westwood introduced Dr. Bill Bush, Director, Center of Mathematics and Science Teacher Development, University of Louisville, who discussed the comparison of ACT cognitive levels and Webb's DOK. He discussed several tables in his handout which included the differences between KCCT and ACT as well as ACT norms for national high school students.
Dr. Bush discussed item difficulty and the fact that it is different from DOK. The item difficulty on the KCCT is relatively high (between 30 and 80 percent) because students are expected to master the items. It is possible for students to do well on all items if they have mastered designated topics and there is variance in difficulty level with the majority around 50 percent. Items may include a few very easy and very difficult questions designed to distinguish between high and low achievers. He said the CATS test is built on content mastery, where the ACT is using 20 year old norms. Students have to score in the top one percent of the ACT to get the top six points of the score and this causes long-term concerns for growth over time. He feels the ACT is a challenge for students to get to a ceiling and should not be put into an accountability system.
Senator Kelly thanked Dr. Bush for working on the math curriculum in Kentucky. He said way too much emphasis is placed on accountability and more emphasis needs to be placed on diagnostic uses. He said if the whole purpose of assessment is the accountability measure, Kentucky will fail. The whole purpose of Senate Bill 130 is assessment that provides diagnostic information early enough to plan curricula and intervention strategies and get students ready to enter college and the workforce.
Dr. Bush said hard decisions have to be made as to what to hold accountable and what to use as tools. He also said the end-of-course assessments will provide a valuable tool, as eleven other states will be using the same test, and Kentucky will be able to compare students, particularly in Algebra II, against students taking the same test.
Senator Kelly said there is three to four weeks preparation and administration time for CATS testing, which causes a lost opportunity in classroom instruction. He asked Dr. Bush if he had been following the middle school intervention with computer assisted construction. Dr. Bush said yes, he was more familiar with the data from the "Carnegie" program than the "I Can Learn" program, but both have high expectations and preparations are being made to implement the "Carnegie" program into 15 GearUp schools.
Representative Moberly asked how long Dr. Bush has been doing professional development on continuous assessment. Dr. Bush said they started this past summer with a group of about 25 Ohio Education Valley Cooperative (OVEC) teachers. He also has published six books for the National Council of Teachers Mathematics on Classroom Assessment so he has been working with teachers since the mid-90's on classroom assessment.
Representative Moberly said this was discussed in 1990 when the Kentucky Education Reform Act was passed and continuous assessment is supposed to play a major role in education reform. He said this idea was lost along the way partly due to a lack of professional development and teachers not being aware of what they were supposed to be doing.
Representative Moberly asked Dr. Bush's opinion of Dr. Newman's contention that Dr. Webb's analysis under values Algebra in the DOK analysis? Dr. Bush said Dr. Webb's analysis does not under value Algebra but expresses that it should be more involved in the core content. He said that Dr. Webb's process is absolutely solid and the information is correct, and he does not see a de-emphasis in the core content in Algebra.
Representative Moberly asked how the EAARS committee should advise the state board in regards to the ACT and assessment issue. Dr. Bush said he would recommend that Kentucky stay on the track it is currently on, which is 11th grade students take the ACT to make sure they are prepared for college. He would not emphasize the ACT as part of the accountability index as the structural components and psychometrics of ACT are prohibitive of obtaining growth across time for students and teachers. He also said it sends the wrong message that difficult means hard DOK level one items as opposed to difficult being items that challenge students to think, reason, and apply. He said end-of-course assessments will provide the same data that the ACT would have provided on an accountability measure, and this is going to create many more demands on high school teachers as well.
With no further business before the committee, the meeting adjourned at 1:00 p.m.