I just received a copy of a memo from the state concerning June Regents exams. I am attaching it to this e-mail. The highlighted portion concerns me... The state is saying essays and other open ended questions cannot be re-scored regardless of final exam grade. This is very troubling!
This is what I received from my Regional Information Center (Eastern Suffolk Boces):
"The State Education Department has released a memo to principals concerning concerning the format, content, and credit allotment of the Regents Examinations and the Regents Competency Tests (RCTs) to be held in June 2011.
In addition, this memo provides information about required statewide scanning procedures for Regents Exams and about a change in scoring policy.
Please see the highlighted section on page 2 of the attached copy of this memo for very important details concerning the policy about rescoring open-ended questions on Regents exams.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org on behalf of Iva Jean Tennant Sent: Fri 5/20/2011 7:08 PM To: email@example.com Subject: Re: Jan 2012 Regents exams
Yes, that is true, I just met with both Dr. King and David Abrams and they said the regents just acted on that this week as they did not get the amount of money to have all regents examinations. So the decision was to cut three foreign language regents and the January regents It should be on the SED site, under board of regents Iva Jean Tennant
-----Original Message----- From: Chris Crater <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Sent: Thu, May 19, 2011 9:49 pm Subject: Jan 2012 Regents exams
Any official word from SED if all Jan 2012 regents exams will be eliminated? I can't find anything on SED website but heard that the Board of Regents approved this earlier this week.
--- On Thu, 5/19/11, Grace Wilkie <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
From: Grace Wilkie <email@example.com> Subject: Re: Possible non-release of regents exams To: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Thursday, May 19, 2011, 10:51 AM
Ben your response did not come through ... can you resend it Grace
They already did that this year to our exams in the middle school and they are being really strict about us grading the part 2 questions and of course the state grades the part one questions First year we have had a secured exam and of course our evaluation will in part be from this exam and we can't make item anaylsis, etc to see where we need to improve. We are grading tomorrow. Iva Jean Tennant
how does a teacher score a response without seeing the question ... there have been years of errors on the tests ... sometimes multiple answers have been accepted ... I do not understand any test being secured ... who does this help other than the state and the cost of this exam ... if your evaluation is based upon the student scores based upon these tests I would do everything in my power to have access to them ...
In reply to your comment about the release of exams. You may recall that the recent January exam in physics was a "secure exam." Teachers were supposed to grade the papers using the answer key, without ever seeing the actual exams.
I note this document mentions that they'll stop releasing exams. Why not? Teachers are going to see them. Ask me in September what questions were on the Geometry Regents this June and I'll probably be able to recall the majority of them. Some, I won't commit to memory, because there's nothing special about an (for example) inverse/converse/contrapositive problem. Toss on something in a style that I didn't specifically teach (i.e. June 2003's question on the Pythagorean theorem applied to a 3-dimensional problem), and I guarantee it'll be on my mind all summer to make sure that my students can do that problem the following year. Don't allow me to ever see the problems, and, in the case of that 2003 problem, I might teach for 10 more years, wondering "why the heck did 85% of my students get a Pythagorean theorem problem incorrect? Just what the heck is the problem??" Thus, how am I supposed to improve my instruction?
Sure, some exams keep the questions a secret - AP, SAT, etc. But the same companies that make those exams also publish books with questions similar to those that students can expect on the exam.