States vow to graduate students who are college- and career-ready but have no idea if they’re succeeding, writes Checker Finn. The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) should test 12th-graders’ academic skills. In addition to reading, writing and math, “how great it would be also to report 12th-grade state results in other core subjects, particularly science and history!”
Requiring high school to take the SAT or ACT, instead of standardized state tests, would encourage first-generation achievers to go to college, writes Susan Dynarski.
Starting in 2007, Michigan has required 11th graders to take the ACT. Only 35 percent of low-income students had taken the exam; that rose to 99 percent, writes Dynarski. “For every 1,000 low-income students who had taken the test before 2007 and scored well, another 480 college-ready, low-income students were uncovered by the universal test.”