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Measuring Up: Prototypes for Mathematics Assessment and innovative licensure for teachers. It is now time to develop a new national understanding of standards-based performance as the true measure of educational progress. Throughout this decade, mathematics has led the way in educational reform. The 1989 MSEB publication Everybody Counts was followed in just two months by publication of the NCTM Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics, with its theme of developing mathematical power in all students. Undergirding these reports are three fundamental principles of testing, assessment, and accountability: Tests should measure what's worth learning, not just what's easy to measure. Progress depends on constant correction based on feedback from assessment. Schools are accountable, both to taxpayers and to students. Even as the renewed public scrutiny compels educators to demonstrate that children are learning, the NCTM's Standards require new ways of measuring what is being learned. Because the linkage between tests and teaching is so close, it is vitally important for the United States that assessment be based on instruments that are properly aligned with the goals of the Standards. The Challenge Why we are doing this At the National Summit on Mathematics Assessment in April 1991, Governor Roy Romer, in his capacity as Co-chair of the National Education Goals Panel, challenged the mathematical community to show the nation what mathematics educators mean by mathematical power and what new and more demanding standards will mean for our young people. One month later, the MSEB authorized creation of prototypes of tasks that could be used to assess fourth graders' mathematical skills and knowledge, thereby providing examples of what children educated according to the new standards should be able to do. They wanted to be sure that the voice of mathematics was heard early and clearly in the assessment reform movement. The MSEB determined that it should be prepared to show, by
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