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Topic: Rescoring
Replies: 1   Last Post: May 27, 2011 8:48 AM

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Posts: 249
Registered: 2/18/05
Posted: May 26, 2011 5:02 PM
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There was a memo from Candace Shryer to the principals

Each answer paper for all State examinations in mathematics should be rated
by a committee with a minimum of three mathematics teachers to ensure the
accuracy of the scores. Beginning in June 2011, schools are *no longer
permitted *to rescore any of the open-ended questions on any Regents Exam
after each question has been rated the required number of times as specified
in the rating guide, regardless of the final exam score. Schools are
required to ensure that the raw scores have been added correctly and that
the resulting scale score has been determined accurately.

Here is the article in NY Times about re-scoring

As always
Grace Wilkie

State Ends a Practice of Rescoring Regents Tests By SHARON
May 25, 2011

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Responding to a suspicious spike in the number of students barely passing
high school Regents exams, New York State education officials have ordered
schools to end the longstanding but controversial practice of rescoring
tests that fall just below the passing grade.

In recent years, statistics show, an unusually large number of students have
obtained exactly the minimum score needed to pass the exams, which are
required for graduation and are often graded by students? own teachers.

For more than a decade, state regulations required schools to reread science
and math Regents exams with scores within five points of the passing grade,
which has shifted from 55 to 65 over those years. The purpose was to ensure
that no student would fail to graduate because of a scoring mistake.

But in practice, schools began to reread barely failing exams in every
subject, according to several investigations and anecdotal reports. And at
times, the process shifted from a quality review to an all-out effort to
find points to help students graduate. Five Regents exams ? one each in
science, math and English and two in social studies ? are required for

State officials have acknowledged unusual scoring patterns, and earlier this
month ruled that high schools could not rescore any ?open-ended? questions,
ones with written or essay answers, in which grading is more subjective. In
a message to principals this week, the New York City Department of
it clear that rescoring multiple-choice questions was also prohibited.

The order is part of a wider effort by the city and the state to shore up
the accuracy of the Regents and other standardized tests as they ask them to
carry an ever-growing weight in a data-driven accountability system for
schools. In the next several years, teachers will begin to be judged in part
on how well students do on the Regents. They are already an important factor
in other high-stakes decisions, including annual A-to-F city school report
card grades, whether schools are closed for poor performance, and whether
principals are praised or fired.

?I?m pleased that the state decided to tighten up its policy on how teachers
score the Regents exams,? Dennis M.
the city?s schools chancellor, said on Wednesday. ?It?s not in our students?
best interest to have teachers pushing their scores over the edge if they
haven?t mastered the material.?

Teachers call the practice of rescoring exams to find extra points
scrubbing. Joel I. Klein, the former chancellor, vowed to end the practice
in 2004, but anecdotal evidence indicated it continued, at least in some

An English teacher at a Bronx high school, who insisted on anonymity for
fear of retribution from her principal, said her administration ?would make
us reread all the ones who were close to the 50, the borderline ones,? she

?When I couldn?t find any points,? she added, ?I wouldn?t give them.?

The open-ended questions on social studies and English tests were among the
most likely to be rescored, according to anecdotal reports. An
analysis<>by The New York Times in February found
that on the English and history
Regents exams in the previous two years, students in the city?s public high
schools had been roughly five times as likely to score 65, the passing
grade, or slightly above it, than to score just below it.

But even on the algebra exam, in which there are no essays, 8,451 students
got grades of exactly 65, while a combined 7,145 students ended up with a
score of 61, 62, 63 or 64. Statisticians say that such a difference is out
of line with the smooth scoring curve that should normally result.

In February, the city announced it would begin regular audits of schools
that showed suspicious scoring patterns, and the city?s order to principals
this week emphasized that it was the rescoring of grades around the passing
bar that was of most concern. ?Scoring committees, once they have rated an
exam, are no longer permitted to rescore them, regardless of final score,?
the order read. ?Specifically, exams receiving a final score of 60 to 64 or
50 to 54 are not permitted to be rescored.?
A version of this article appeared in print on May 26, 2011, on page
A28 of the New York edition with the headline: State Ends A Practice Of
Rescoring Regents Tests.

Date Subject Author
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Read Re: Rescoring
Gary Furman

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