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CEP: NCLB Focus on Proficiency Is Shortchanging Students

CEP (Center on Education Policy) has released an analysis to answer: Is the Emphasis on “Proficiency”Shortchanging Higher- and Lower-Achieving Students? (pdf doc). The study shows good news for the NCLB (No Child Left Behind) policy.

Sean Cavanagh of Education Week is among the few who picked the study and states the following:

The 50-state analysis found that test scores for both "advanced" and "basic" students rose in nearly three-quarters of assessments studied across states and grade levels, a level of progress only slightly lower than that of students reaching proficiency.

The study sought to examine a story line put forward in recent years—namely, that schools are not focusing on the highest- or lowest-scoring students, but rather on middle achievers, said Jack Jennings, the president of the Center on Education Policy, which produced the report.

While the progress of high and low achievers could be stagnating in individual instances or schools, the study indicates that on average, those students are advancing...

On the other hand, Andrew Rotherham asks: 'Is it too cynical to think it would be bigger news if it went the other way?' Rotherham wrote an entry at eduwonk.com to comment why so few had taken on the news today.

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