February 4, 2007

Cheating/test-prep in Dayton, Ohio, school

It happens every so often: we hear about administrators or teachers who copy items from secure tests and then teach students using those items. (See several item comparisons.) In this case, the alleged miscreant was an administrator of a charter school who passed the items on to a consultant who did the teaching and later fired an underling who identified the problem. This behavior isn't isolated to charter schools, and as Sharon Nichols and David Berliner note in Collateral Damage (to be released in March), there is a range of "cheating" responses to high-stakes pressures. Some of the cheating is clearly self-serving (as in the case in Dayton, if the evidence bears out the allegations).

But all of the non-curriculum responses undermine the trustworthiness of test scores as indicators.

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Posted in Accountability Frankenstein on February 4, 2007 11:15 AM |