AZMerit’s Stagnant Scores

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The Arizona Republic reported that Arizona students did not see much improvement in their AZMerit assessment scores from the 2014-2015 school year. AZMerit is the Common Core-aligned assessment that the state of Arizona has used for the last two school years.

They write:

Most grade levels improved their statewide reading and math passing percentages by single digits — and the overall positive trajectory shows Arizona did well to raise its bar, educators said.

But the second year of AzMerit scores, which were released Monday by the Arizona Department of Education, also brought more of the same as the 2014-15 school year.

More than 60 percent of the state’s students failed the math and reading portions of AzMERIT in 2015-16. In the inaugural year, nearly two-thirds of Arizona pupils failed the test.

In math, six out of the nine grade levels tested had most of their students score “minimally proficient.” In English language arts, eight out of nine grades mostly scored at the test’s lowest performance level.

AzMERIT scores are divided into four performance levels: minimally proficient, partially proficient, proficient and highly proficient. The latter two categories are considered passing. The test is given to students in grades 3-11.

Arizonans Against Common Core founder and parent activist Jennifer Reynolds said in a statement to supporters:

The Arizona Department of Education released the preliminary results from the 2016 AzMERIT exam as compared to the 2015 results. As you can see below there is no stark improvement in test scores and this is no surprise! This test has never been validated nor field tested that it will assess the Arizona College and Career Ready Standards (ACCRS), and is in fact Utah’s Common Core Assessment or the Student Assessment of Growth and Excellence (SAGE) test that we bought from them in December of 2014! Opt out Arizona, this is our natural right to do so on an invalid test!

Below is a comparison of the scores:

Screenshot 2016-06-29 22.54.02