California lawmakers made it clear when they approved new Common Core standards for testing K-12 students in math and English language arts that new scores could not legitimately be compared to old scores in gauging achievement.
John Fensterwald at EdSource said the information was deleted from DataQuest in preparation for a September 9 release of the first Common Core test results. Liana Heitin at Education Week said the information was still sort of available—in downloadable Excel files and annual press releases.
The department said it was following a state law passed in 2013 that says school districts and the department, “shall not use a comparison resulting from the scores and results” of the new tests “and the assessment scores and results from assessments that measured previously adopted content standards.”
That is a directive for agencies not to use old data in their official actions. The law, which updated the education code, does not comment on parents and nongovernmental organizations (including academics and education advocates) having access to the information.
But Deputy Superintendent Keric Ashley expressed the department’s concern in a press release that the old data would cause “confusion because the two tests cannot be compared.”
Bill Lucia, CEO and executive director of the advocacy group EdVoice, told Fensterwald the department purposely misread the law because, “Apparently the public and parents are too ignorant to understand or dangerous to be trusted with the facts.”