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High School Exit Examinations » Annual Reports & State Profiles

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State High School Exit Exams: A Policy in Transition

Author(s): Shelby McIntosh
Published: September 19, 2012

CEP’s 11th annual report on state high school exit exams finds that states are embracing higher standards on their exit exams, which means schools and students will feel the impact. The report, based on data collected from state education department personnel in 45 states, discusses the present status of state exit exam policies, the future of these policies as states implement the Common Core State Standards and common assessments, and lessons that can be learned from states’ past experiences with implementing new exit exam policies.

State Profiles for Exit Exam Policies Through 2011-12

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State High School Tests: Changes in State Policies and the Impact of the College and Career Readiness Movement

Author(s): Shelby McIntosh
Published: December 8, 2011

This 10th installment of CEP’s annual study of high school exit exams and other assessments finds that fewer states are requiring students to pass a high school exit exam, though testing in other areas has increased. The report, based on a survey of all 50 state departments of education, discusses state policies associated with high school exit exams, college entrance exams (such as the ACT or SAT), and college and career readiness assessments.

State Profiles for Assessment Policies Through 2010-11

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State High School Tests: Exit Exams and Other Assessments

Author(s): Shelby Dietz
Published: December 21, 2010

CEP’s 9th annual report on high school exit exams discusses new developments in state high school exit exam policies and how students enrolled in school in states with these policies are affected. This year’s report finds that 28 states required high school exit exams in the 2009-10 school year (up from 26 in 2009), and public schools in those states enroll 83 percent of the nation’s students of color and more than three-quarters of the country’s low-income pupils. For the first time, this year’s report also includes information about graduation requirements in states that do not require exit exams.

Key findings from this year's report:

View all CEP videos about State High School Tests: Exit Exams and Other Assessments.

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State High School Exit Exams 2009 Annual Report: Trends in Test Programs, Alternate Pathways, and Pass Rates

Author(s): Ying Zhang
Published: November 5, 2009

The report draws from CEP's eight-year study of high school exit exams to identify long-term trends in state policies and student performance. It highlights a growing trend among states to establish alternate pathways to graduation for students who are struggling to pass exit exams. The report also analyzes exit exam pass rates and finds that 11 of the 16 states showed an average annual growth in the proportion of students passing the test in reading and 13 states showed average annual growth in mathematics. Although many states narrowed the gaps in initial pass rates between the various student subgroups over the years, the gaps remain large in both subjects.

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State High School Exit Exams 2008 Annual Report: Moving Toward End-of-Course Exams

Author(s): Dalia Zabala, Dr. Angela Minnici, Jennifer McMurrer, Liza Briggs
Published: August 13, 2008

This report examines the new developments in the implementation of state high school exit exams in the 26 states that currently implement or plan to implement these tests. The report specifically focuses on the states’ move away from minimum-competency and comprehensive exams toward end-of-course exams.

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State High School Exit Exams 2007 Annual Report: Working to Raise Test Scores

Author(s): Dalia Zabala, Dr. Angela Minnici, Jennifer McMurrer, Dr. Deanna Hill, Alice P. Bartley, and Jack Jennings
Published: September 6, 2007

This report looks at the new developments in the implementation of state high school exit exams in the 26 states that currently implement or plan to implement these exams. The report focuses on the efforts made at the state and local level to raise initial pass rates for all students, help students who fail on their first attempt, and close the achievement gap.

Some information on Mississippi’s profile, page 111, has been updated (December 2007).

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State High School Exit Exams 2006 Annual Report: A Challenging Year

Author(s): Nancy Kober, Dalia Zabala, Naomi Chudowsky, Victor Chudowdsky, Keith Gayler, and Jennifer McMurrer
Published: August 1, 2006

This study of state high school exit exams analyzes the challenges that states faced in 2005-06 as they implemented these exams and describes the remediation services and other support that states provide to help students pass the exams.

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State High School Exit Exams 2005 Annual Report: States Try Harder, But Gaps Persist

Author(s): Patricia Sullivan, Margery Yeager, Eileen O'Brien, Nancy Kober, Keith Gayler, Naomi Chudowsky, Victor Chudowsky, Jana Wooden, Jack Jennings, Diane Stark Rentner
Published: August 1, 2005

Study of state exit exam results showing that despite innovations by some states and increased state funding and support to improve pass rates achievement gaps still exist.

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State High School Exit Exams 2004 Annual Report: A Maturing Reform

Author(s): CEP
Published: August 1, 2004

Preview of findings from the 2004 CEP report, STATE HIGH SCHOOL EXIT EXAMS: A Maturing Reform.

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State High School Exit Exams 2003 Annual Report: Put to the Test

Author(s): Keith Gayler, Naomi Chudowsky, Nancy Kober, Madlene Hamilton
Published: August 1, 2003

Results and findings from second year of state high school exit exams mandated by the No Child Left Behind Act.

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State High School Exit Exams 2002 Annual Report

Author(s): Naomi Chudowsky, Nancy Kober, Keith Gayler, Madlene Hamilton
Published: August 1, 2002

This report is the first in an annual series of reports on exit exams as part of the implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act.

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