Saturday, October 11, 2014

NWEA Test Scores

Fall test scores are being released across Chicago and other places.  Here is my guide to interpreting test scores.  This does not apply to 7th graders worried about high school.

If child's your score is below 70%, it's time to get serious about education.   There are no excuses.  More reading, occasional extra math throughout the week of any type and level, and most of all, cancel activities and get more sleep.

If your child's score is between 70% and 98%, reread the prior paragraph and decide whether you want to do this now or staring in a later grade.  Right now my forth grader is loading up his schedule with activities and sleep is going out the window.  I'm on the fence with this because there are a few more things besides the four R's required for a successful child, the things that underly motivation, determination, resilience, aka grit.   I'm working on a course that addresses all of these things at once. I'll have more to say about this next year.  Right now it's in the secret weapon R&D department.

If your child's score bounces between the 80's and 99% from season to season and year to year, it's because a) he is not a geek, and b) if he is at 99% with a standard deviation of 16%, he can only go down because there's no such thing as a score of 116%.

For those of you looking at 99's on the test scores:  If your child is in a early grade, 1st - 3rd, and he does really, really well, the primary reason is that the rest of the country hasn't got serious about education yet and if he doesn't pick up the pace, he will be left behind.  In other words, don't get excited about your genius because it doesn't mean anything yet.  If your child is in the 4th grade and reading at a college level, don't get overly excited because she'll find other interests in high school while the rest of the country catches up.  None of this is static.

If your child is below 50%, for whatever reason, I recommend a 365 day boot camp, the type only found in dire test prep situations.

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