Stanley L. Swartz, Ph.D.
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Alisa Harris
Reply with quote  #1 
For the research paper, I am going to research the effect of Benchmark Exams on California State Tests in the Etiwanda School District.  Our district adopted Benchmark Assessments from Action Learning Systems in 2007-2008 school year.  We followed the Action Learning System program by reviewing the Benchmark Assessment results and redirecting our instruction based on the achievement or improvement of state standards based on student performance.  Have the Benchmark Assessments improved or CST scores for our district?
Sandra Garcia
Reply with quote  #2 
It sounds like a good beginning bu I was wonder if you were going to look at the benchmark for Language Arts or Mathematics? I would also like to know hoe far the data goes back for your research?
Sandra Garcia
Reply with quote  #3 
For my research topic I am going to evaluate if data driven lesson help in raising students achievement gap in areas such as Language Arts and Mathematics. I am also going to research if all teachers are using data to help plan their lessons?
Alisa Harris
Reply with quote  #4 
That's something I need to think about- when we started the Benchmarks in 2007, I was teaching both math and language arts.  I'll have to look at what information I can get on both the Benchmarks and CST results.  The data for the Benchmarks will only back to the 2007-2008 school year, so I'll only have two years of data, but research like this is ongoing right?  This'll be a good question for Dr. Swartz. Also, I can compare the growth (if applicable)  before we started the Benchmarks to growth after the Benchmarks.  
Alisa Harris
Reply with quote  #5 

I think that's a good research topic and completely applicable to what we do.  What data results will you be referring to?  And, as you asked me, how far back will you go?  Will you use a survey to research if all teachers are using data to plan your lesson?  Also, will you just be looking at your site?  This is something I have to figure out too.   
Irma Preciado
Reply with quote  #6 

Both of you have great ideas. I am still going to look into QEIA funding for our district, trying to narrow down to at least 3 schools.  I was able to contact the director that handles QEIA funding and he is willing to provide information for the district and the state. He seems to be very supportive.  I need to research small class size and its effect, first.

Reply with quote  #7 
Irma!!! I don't have your email address and I have a question for you.  Can you please email me @  Thank you.

Your topic sounds interesting!  What is QEIA funding?  That's awesome that you're able to get help at the district level!
Irma Preciado
Reply with quote  #8 

Sorry I did not respond sooner.  QEIA funding is money schools recieve that requires them to have low numbers.  For example, upper grades can only go up to 25 instead of 34 like other schools.  But I will email you.

Vinh Tran
Reply with quote  #9 
I was wondering and maybe I'm totally wrong, but with benchmarks being an assessment tool.  Would maybe the question might be is passing benchmark test a good indicator for CST success?
Alisa Harris
Reply with quote  #10 

Good question- in a way yes.  However, the district has presented the Benchmarks as a way to guide the schools through instruction to success on the CST.  Since the Benchmarks are supposed to mirror the CST.  I want to see if that is effective.  Does that make sense?  If not, let me know, so I can explain it better- that will help me with my paper!  What is your topic?

Vinh Tran
Reply with quote  #11 
I completely understand what you mean.  With so much pressure on the state testing, I guess there is no correct answer but a good hypothesis that can be proven.  I guess many districts are different so your district may be taking a bigger step in the right direction in preparation.  I know that in my district, our math benchmarks looks more like the CST in comparison language arts, but it doesn't seem to mirror the CST
   As for my topic, I started this
last year at a new school that has a population of 4th-8th grade.  Before my school opened, the neighboring school was the K-5 population ( and now serves as a k-3 school).  I wanted to compare CST test scores we had at our middle school setting for fourth and fifth grade to the scores in the past to our last year's CST scores.   Where I'm finding an issue is, we only have one year of results compared to the history of results of the other school.  Do you have any suggestions?
Alisa Harris
Reply with quote  #12 
I don't have any suggestions.  I would use the data that you have available.  
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