A new study shows that MCAS has had a profound impact on student academic performance.
The study, commissioned by the Private Industry Council and Mayor Menino, largely paid for by the Boston Foundation and conducted by the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University, focuses on Boston Public Schools’ class of 2003, the first for which passing MCAS was a graduation requirement. Compared to earlier years, it finds a significant increase in the number of members of that class who went on to graduate from college.
Why then is the Board of Education so quick to abandon it in favor of national standards and assessments that have neither been tried nor tested?
Last summer, the commonwealth adopted weaker national standards that will require reworking the assessments. Instead of holding up MCAS as the example other states should adopt, Massachusetts is working with a consortium of states, all of which currently have less rigorous assessments, to create new tests that measure mastery of weaker standards.