During the deliberations on the pending legislative changes to our CATS assessments, there has been a lot of discussion that our mathematics curriculum has been a “mile wide, and an inch deep.” As a consequence, students have too much ground to cover and never develop mastery in the most important math areas like fundamental arithmetic operations and fractions.
Now, a new study reported by Education Week (Subscription May be Required) indicates that similar problems may impact science instruction in public schools, as well.
The problem is apparently becoming well-known. Education Week reports that the Advanced Placement exams in science are undergoing revision because these tests have been too broad and shallow in coverage, as well.
The first revised AP test will be in biology. It will be interesting to see how scores on this assessment shift nationally and here in Kentucky.
Fortunately, the current version of the bill to change CATS requires a thorough review and update for all of Kentucky’s education standards. Based on the latest research and the trends in AP science exams, it looks like the timing of this standards update could not be better.