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Testing in Michigan: An Overview

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By GreatSchools Staff

Michigan Education YES! Grades

Michigan uses the Education YES! Grades to measure school performance. Education YES! Grades are based on achievement status, achievement change, and schools' self-ratings on Indicators of School Performance. Achievement status is based on up to three years of test results. MEAP English language arts and math results are used for elementary schools; MEAP English language arts, math, science and social studies results are used for middle schools; and MME English language arts, math, science and social studies results are used for high schools. The achievement change measure uses up to five years of test scores to determine whether or not schools are making academic progress over time. The Indicators of School Performance measure key school characteristics that have the most affect on student achievement.

These three components are combined into a composite grade of A, B, C, D-Alert or Unaccredited. A school's grade may be lowered if the school did not make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

Why do Education YES! Grades matter?

A designation of D-Alert or Unaccredited suggests that the overall student population at the school is not meeting the state's expectations. Schools designated as Unaccredited face state-mandated and federal consequences; they must, among other things, develop and implement a school improvement plan.

What if my child attends a low-performing school?

If your child attends a low-performing school, ask what steps the school is taking to raise achievement levels for all students and what you can do to help. Because low-performing schools are likely to face consequences under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, your child may be eligible to receive federal and/or state money for tutoring or to transfer to another school.

Why do some schools not have Education YES! Grades?

If a school is new or has a small number of students with valid MEAP or MME scores, the state does not calculate a grade for that school. If your school's grade is not listed on GreatSchools, contact your principal to find out more. Search for Michigan Schools.

Comments from readers

"I think you mislead when you do not introduce idea of cut scores with proficiency. Changes in cut scores can make a school rise or fall in %proficient. You should make that clear. "
"It would be great to see Stanford - Binet test score averages for the schools as well as the number of National Merit Scholars each graduating class has recently had. This would allow us to compare schools better from state to state. Thanks for providing this valuable information! Laura Smaling"
"I am very concerned that you do not explain to parents that any testing done in the fall is of serious consequences to the school and student. Data shows that students loose a great deal of content over the course of the summer and return to be tested over the content from the prior year. Additionally, the data does not reflect the fact the the content tested has been changed practically yearly. It is frustrating for me as a teacher as we are 'graded' on the testing results but never is it taken into consideration that the climate of the community for the testing has a substantial effect on how students test. An example would be the state changing the testing for the year 2007 for high school students. the decision was shared with teachers in the fall to prep students to the ACT. The testing format was completely different than the prior years for the high school MEAP. It is very important for the students to be ready to take the test and to understand how the testing proce! ss happens. Additionally, if we are testing for outcomes, are we then teaching to the outcomes?"