By Shekinah Harper, Editorial Intern
As the academic year begins, parents and students need to make sure they are up-to-date on the new implementations in the educations system. In June, the Georgia Department of Education announced they would be implementing the Georgia Milestone Assessment System during the 2014-2015 academic year.
The new system is meant to replace the CRCT and EOCT in order to prepare students for college and give them a more realistic picture of academic progress. Following the Common Core Georgia Performance Standards, a major benefit of the testing system is that it is one consistent testing program throughout grades 3-12, opposed to a series of individual test each year.
Although there are high expectations for growth in student learning, a new system means a new start for students. The initial scores will be lower than previous years’ CRCT and EOCT scores. This will bring Georgia’s tests in line with other indicators of how students are performing and how prepared they are to enter college or the workforce.
State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge wants to insure students are able to compete on a rigorous level instead of a level of minimum-competency.
The new system will include open ended questions, opposed to the previous multiple questions offered. Special accommodations will be made for special education students with an entirely online system by the fifth year of implementation.
CTB/McGraw-Hill Education was awarded a bid of $107.8 million for a five year contract to develop the new testing system.