March 21, 2008

NCEA Convention

Value-Added Assessment

Catholic educators are called now more than ever to be able to demonstrate that students are proficient and achieve more than a year’s growth during a school year, because they attend Catholic schools.

William Sanders found that classroom teachers are the most important factor in achieving gains in student achievement. But, most standardized tests tell us little about how the teacher affects student achievement and growth.

The assumption of the value-added model is that for a student to show growth, the student must achieve a “gain score” that is greater than one-year’s growth—value-added.

This year the Archdiocese of Indianapolis will provide both growth and proficiency reports for all 67 archdiocesan schools so teachers can plan to modify instruction. It has been interesting to see high-performing schools, show significant growth in performance, even though this is harder to accomplish when schools are already performing at very high levels.

The goal of all Catholic educators should be to demonstrate that they have achieved growth and proficiency for all students. Meeting this goal should help convince people about the value of excellent teachers in our Catholic schools.

To read more about teacher impact and value-added assessment of academic growth, please see Teacher Impact on Student Proficiency and Growth at

(Adapted from an article in Momentum, the Official Journal of the National Catholic Educational Association, November/December 2006. Used with permission.) †

Local site Links: