Student Assessments for Deeper Learning Resolution

Summary: The Student Assessments for Deeper Learning Resolution requests the Department of Education and the Legislative Education Study Group to convene a task force to develop recommendations for a new student assessment policy aligned with the alternative assessment models allowed by the federal Every Student Succeeds Act.

Based on New Mexico SJM 1

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE

This shall be called the “Student Assessments for Deeper Learning Resolution.”

SECTION 2. FINDINGS—The legislature finds that:

  1. The federal Every Student Succeeds Act, enacted in 2016, empowers states to develop their own accountability systems to measure student performance and encourages states to begin pilot projects that use a variety of methods to measure student success.
  1. For states wishing to develop alternative, evidence-based assessment systems, the Every Student Succeeds Act creates an enhanced assessment instruments program, which will provide funding to develop pilot programs of innovative assessment programs that use a variety of indicators to show how a student is performing.
  1. Applications for the pilot programs were accepted through September 22, 2016, and it is anticipated that additional applications will be accepted in the future.
  1. The Every Student Succeeds Act provides states with the flexibility to adopt high-quality academic assessments in mathematics, reading, language arts or science, which may allow students to demonstrate proficiency in the form of portfolios, projects or extended performance tasks and other locally designed formative assessments that, along with standardized tests, create a summative score for a student.
  1. The Every Student Succeeds Act permits local educational agencies to choose a locally selected assessment in lieu of the state assessment, but only if the local educational agency “selects a nationally recognized high school academic assessment that has been approved for use by the state.”
  1. The Every Student Succeeds Act requires each state to add at least one non-academic indicator of school quality or student success as part of its statewide accountability system, opening the door to the possibility of using factors such as student engagement, post-secondary readiness, school climate and safety, career readiness and other metrics to measure student success.
  1. At this time, our state is not yet prepared to take advantage of the flexibility provided in the Every Student Succeeds Act and the associated pilot program funding opportunities.
  1. There is a demand throughout the state for alternative assessment models that use a variety of approaches to measure a student’s progress.
  1. Statewide studies, research and analyses are necessary for the state to be ready to propose a pilot program and take advantage of the new flexible assessment possibilities provided by the Every Student Succeeds Act.

SECTION 3. STUDY OF ALTERNATIVE ASSESSMENT MODELS

  1. The legislature requests that the [education department] and the [legislative education study committee] convene a task force composed of educational practitioners; academic and pedagogical researchers; community, tribal and civic leaders; union members; industry representatives; higher education representatives; and others who have an interest in developing an alternative assessment model to build upon the work that is already taking place in the state and to develop recommendations for a new assessment policy.
  1. The task force will report its recommendations and a proposed new assessment policy to the legislature by [November 1, 2017].

 

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