Performance-Based Assessment: Lessons Learned from Leading School Districts.Report as inadecuate

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The use of performance assessment for instruction and accountability and the support for its use provided by the school district were studied in three suburban school districts in Colorado, New York, and Illinois. Two were elementary and secondary districts, but the Illinois district was a high school district. All three districts have employed performance assessment for several years. In instruction, the districts found that performance assessment helped student understanding, clarified evaluation, helped engage student attention, and increased motivation. Accountability was emphasized in the application of performance assessment in two districts, both of which had adopted policies that clarified the use of performance assessment in overall accountability. One district developed plans for performance assessment requirements for high school graduation. District offices in all three districts supported the implementation of performance assessment through staff development activities, policy statements, public information sharing sessions, and changes in district testing policies. Both advantages and disadvantages to performance assessment in these districts are outlined. An appendix contains interview questions used in the study. (Contains eight tables.) (SLD)

Descriptors: Accountability, Educational Assessment, Educational Change, Educational Policy, Educational Practices, Elementary Secondary Education, Performance Based Assessment, School Districts, Student Evaluation, Student Motivation, Suburban Schools, Test Use

Author: Seyfarth, John T.


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