Here Comes the New ISAT

Nobody but me seems all that interested or concerned about the new ISATs coming in early March, which are going to be measured more rigorously than in the past.  Are kids or parents going to freak out?  Again, I don't know.  But they might.  And CPS is beginning to prepare parents (and teachers and kids) for the tougher tests/test results.

The ISAT cut scores have been low (and lowered) for years, so it's generally a good thing.  But it also means lower ISAT scores for schools and districts -- and kids.

To make sure folks are prepared for the lower scores, CPS has sent out a letter on the topic whose contents got eclipsed by the racy link that accompanied the letter.  Some of its contents:

"In many cases, some students who previously met or exceeded standards on the ISAT will instead show the need for improvement. However, even if scores do drop for your child, it does not mean they know less than they did before or are less capable than they were in previous years. ISBE is simply raising the bar on the ISAT in order to align it more closely with standards that better indicate if students are on a path for college and career-readiness." (ISAT Letter for Parents)

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  • Parents seemed calmed down once they understood their kid would stay at the same percentile under the old or new test, even as scores are expected to be much lower on the new.

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