Earlier this year, the Iowa Department of Education commissioned two independent reports with regard to the Iowa Assessments, which schools are required by Iowa Code to administer for accountability purposes.
The objective of these reports was twofold:
To determine the level of alignment between our Iowa Core standards and the reading and math portions of the Iowa Assessments in grades 3-8, 10 and 11.
To set performance standards for the Iowa Assessments at each grade level to indicate students’ college and career readiness.
Data Recognition Corporation was chosen through a competitive-bidding process to complete these reports: Iowa Assessments Standard Setting Technical Report and Iowa Report on Math and Reading. While the purpose of these reports was to comply with U.S. Department of Education requirements, it was hoped that the reports would add context to an ongoing discussion around the future of accountability testing in Iowa.
Iowa’s students and schools deserve a high-quality accountability assessment that is aligned to our statewide standards. This is critical not only in our efforts to determine whether schools are meeting Adequate Yearly Progress targets under the federal No Child Left Behind law, but also in our efforts to improve our education system.