Measuring What Matters: Using Assessment and Accountability to Improve Student Learning

Committee for Economic Development

The Committee for Economic Development (CED) is a business group with a respectable past, particularly when it comes to issuing solemn pronouncements, but in recent years it hasn't been much of a player in K-12 education. Now CED has weighed in with a 44-page "policy guide" intended, says president Charles Kolb, to serve "as a guide for making assessment an effective tool to improve student learning and achievement". There isn't a lot here that will be new to veterans of standards-based reform but the document could be a worthy primer for newcomers, particularly in understanding the place of testing within a reform framework-and not becoming paralyzed by anxiety that the tests aren't yet perfect. Chapter 4 (on using tests to hold students and educators accountable) is especially welcome, as it explains how several states currently handle test-based accountability. Contact the Committee for Economic Development at 477 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10022. Phone (212) 688-2063; fax (212) 758-9068; or surf to www.ced.org.

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