The Star Press up in Indianapolis reports that Indiana is dropping the GED as an alternative program to earn a high school credential.
The state will only offer McGraw-Hill’s competing TASC (Test Assessing Secondary Completion) as a way for high school leavers to get a credential.
Apparently, as this online Power Point says, TASC will be the only game in town in 2014 in New York, as well.
This raises several questions.
• The TASC is new, so I don’t know if there are any rigorous studies showing the relative difficulty of the TASC and the GED.
As a note, comments on Slide 5 from the New York State Power Point indicate the new academic rigor from Common Core to be found soon in the GED won’t be introduced into NY public schools until 2016. The comment seems to imply the choice to go to TASC is because the rigor is lower than the new GED.
• The GED recently announced it was going to make its assessments harder. Is Indiana ducking out for something they think will be easier?
• New York’s Department of Education reports the new GED is not going to be provided by a non-profit group any more but by a new for-profit organization that is going to essentially double test costs to take the GED dramatically to $120 per examination.
• Will other states follow Indiana and New York and only offer the TASC? If so, will we ever know the answer to the first bullet?
• TASC’s website says it is Common Core State Standards aligned. Is that a good thing?
• McGraw-Hill says it will charge $54 for each TASC administration, less than half the cost of the new, Pearson Publishers’ GED. Kentucky is using Pearson to supply its KPREP tests. Is there a possibility Kentucky is getting similar pricing treatment from Pearson?