High-stakes standards-based accountability reforms are a set of educational policies that define the knowledge and skills children are to acquire (content standards) and the level of proficiency they are to attain on specific standardized measures of academic achievement (performance standards). The high stakes associated with these policies refer to the consequences that are enacted upon children, teachers, schools, school districts, and/or state education systems due to the children and/or a child failing to attain the performance standard. The stakes can range from denying grade promotion to the student, affecting teachers’ and/or administrators’ salaries and/or tenure, sanctioning or even closing schools or regional education systems, or potentially humiliating education stakeholders by making school-wide or system-wide test results available to the public. Additionally, many states require early ...

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