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State Specific Test Prep
posted by Karen Quinn, The Testing Mom - October 7th, 2013
With the acceptance of the State Standards Common Core by most US states, many parents across the country are wondering about state specific test prep. While the State Standards may seem to make test prep more confusing at first, there’s nothing to worry about. Once you know which Standards your state has rejected or accepted, test prep is virtually the same as for any other standardized test.
What are the State Standards?
Created through a collaboration between the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and the National Governors Association (NGA), along with a multitude of educational and academic experts across the country, the State Standards Initiative is a program aimed at ending under-educated high school graduates.
A disturbing number of high school seniors, when tested, have shown to be several grade levels behind their peers in very basic skills, particularly English-language skills and math. In some instances, graduating seniors found it extremely difficult to compose a grammatically correct resume, a key skill in finding employment.
To put an end to this issue, the State Standards represent ‘core’ subjects which are universally believed to be central to a quality education. These subjects are then tested each year at age- and grade-appropriate levels, ensuring that each student has learned what they need in each grade before advancing to the next grade level.
State specific test prep is important because each state has the option to reject or accept the common core test battery. While most states have accepted the core as-is, some, such as Minnesota, have rejected portions of it. Check online or with your child’s school to determine precisely which subjects will be tested before you begin test prep with your child. Once you know your state’s decision, you can find great free online test questions at sites such as http://www.testprepreview.com/common-core-test-prep.htm. These questions are a great place to begin in prepping your child. You can also purchase ready-made study guides or create your own state specific test prep questions by simply reading through your child’s current textbooks.