My Reaction to Michigan's Switch to the SAT? Carry On.

I do not deny that we have a lot to learn about Michigan's switch to a new "college-readiness" assessment and the impact this switch will have on students' admission to colleges and universities. Any time we spend learning about the SAT is time we could spend learning about something else, like teaching practices that positively impact student achievement. At the same time, I can't help but feel indifferent about the news of the change.

High schools exist to teach students to be successful in the world they graduate into. College readiness exams measure a narrow band of that world. Assuming we are focused on teaching students the knowledge and skills they need (rather than just those that are assessed), the brand of exam should have little impact on how we work with students.

My message for teachers about this week's news:

Carry on.

College Board president key figure in development of Common Core

Nick Anderson, writing for the Washington Post Back in March 2014:

Coleman’s vision for the SAT, with emphasis on analysis of texts from a range of disciplines as well as key math and language concepts, appears to echo the philosophy underlying the Common Core and could help the test track more closely with what students are learning in the nation’s classrooms.

Differing Points-of-View

The Detroit News:

Michigan’s high school juniors will be required to take the SAT college assessment exam instead of the ACT next spring ...

Quoted in the article, here's Wendy Zdeb-Roper, Executive Director of the MASSP:

Colleges and universities have not even seen the test yet and will need to re-norm their acceptance standards, since it will include a new scoring scale ...

Later in the article:

Jim Cotter, Michigan State University’s director of admissions, said he expects the impact on the admission review process will be minimal.

By my measure, the gap between "re-norm their acceptance standards" and "the impact ... will be minimal." is pretty huge.