K-PREP high school science
As with the other high school tests, K-PREP science scores for our high school students also do not come from a state-developed test. Instead, the high school science score is derived from performance on a new end-of-course exam in high school biology developed by the ACT, Inc., as part of the ACT’s Quality Core tests.
This graph shows how proficiency rates compare between the K-PREP end-of-course high school science assessment and the Benchmark Score results from ACT’s PLAN test given to Kentucky’s 10th grade students in the 2011-2012 school year. We had to use PLAN for this comparison because the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education does not provide an ACT Benchmark Score in science, so the Kentucky Department of Education’s data does not include a science benchmark statistic for the ACT. The PLAN Benchmark Score is linked to Benchmark Scores developed by the ACT, Inc. for the ACT test. Those ACT Benchmarks, which are developed from a survey of colleges to ascertain true student performance, show students have a 75 percent chance of passing their first related college course in science.
The PLAN Benchmark Score performance shown in this graph indicates the proportion of Kentucky students in the 10th grade that are on track to do well in following high school science courses that in turn will prepare those students to succeed in postsecondary education.
Once again, the fairly typical patterns found in most of our examples from the elementary and middle schools are repeated. The PLAN Benchmark performance is notably lower than the new K-PREP performance, but the K-PREP performance is notably lower than the performance from the last year of high school KCCT science testing. This again raises the question of whether the rigor in the K-PREP scoring is high enough.