For just over one year now, I have been blogging about that which is occurring in my neighbor state – New Mexico – under the leadership of Hanna Skandera (the acting head of the New Mexico Public Education Department and Jeb Bush protégé; see prior post here). This state is increasingly becoming another “state to watch” in terms of their teacher accountability policies as based on value-added models (VAMs), or what in New Mexico they term their value-added scores (VASs).
Accordingly, the state is another in which a recent lawsuit is bringing to light some of the issues with these models, particularly in terms of data errors, missingness, incompleteness, and Common Core, Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) tests that are now being used for consequential decision-making purposes, right out of the gate. For more about this lawsuit, click here. For more information about the PARCC tests, and protests against it – a reported 950 students in Las Cruces walked out of classes 10 days ago in protest, and 800 students “opted out” with parental support – click here and here.
For those of you who live in New Mexico, I am heading there for a series of presentations and meetings tomorrow (Friday, March 13) with an assortment of folks ranging from school board members, parents, students, members of the media, and academics to discuss that which is happening in New Mexico. My visit is being sponsored by New Mexico State University’s Borderlands Writing Project.
Here is the information for my main talk, tomorrow (Friday, March 13) night from 7:00-9:00 p.m., on “Critical Perspectives on Assessment-Based Accountability,” in the Health and Social Services Auditorium on the NMSU campus in Las Cruces. Attached is the press release as well as the advertising flyer. After my presentation there will be breakout sessions that are also open to the public (1) for parents on making decisions about the tests; (2) for Taking the Test, allowing people to try out a practice test and provide feedback; and (3) for next steps – a session for teachers, students and people who want to help create positive change.
Hope to see you there!