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High School Exit Examinations » Special Reports & Articles

Guest Editorial in the Tucson Citizen

Author(s): Jack Jennings
Published: May 24, 2009

On May 14, 2009, the Tucson Citizen published this guest editorial from CEP that addresses Arizona's high school exam policies for alternate paths for graduation and the state's testing policy for high school students who are learning English. The newspaper invited Jack Jennings and Ying Zhang to write this editorial because of research CEP conducted in five Arizona high schools. This research resulted in two reports, Conflicts Between State Policy and School Practice: Learning from Arizona's Experience with High School Exam Policies and Caught in the Middle: Arizona's English Language Learners and the High School Exit Exam, which are posted on the CEP Web site under the "High School Exit Examinations" tab.

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Conflicts Between State Policy and School Practice: Learning from Arizona’s Experience with High School Exam Policies

Author(s): Ying Zhang
Published: April 7, 2009

This report looks at how local educators perceive and act on state policies designed to help at-risk students and English language learners achieve the levels of proficiency needed to pass state high school exit examinations and graduate. Our findings are based on data from school observations and interviews with more than 50 school administrators, teachers, and other school staff in Arizona.

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Caught in the Middle: Arizona's English Language Learners and the High School Exit Exam

Author(s): Angela Minnici, Dalia Zabala, Alice P. Bartley
Published: November 13, 2007

In this report, we present a portrait of how some Arizona educators, students, and families are faring with the state exit exam, known as Arizona’s Instrument to Measure Standards or AIMS. In particular, we examine how Arizona’s exit exam policy is influencing the education of English language learners (ELLs)—a group of students that is caught in the middle of challenges and controversy about exit exams and education in Arizona. This report also attempts to identify the effects of the exit exam on ELLs in Arizona and to understand why districts and high schools in Arizona continue to struggle to raise pass rates for ELLs. 

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"It's Different Now": How Exit Exams Are Affecting Teaching and Learning in Jackson and Austin

Author(s): Dalia Zabala, Angela Minnici
Published: March 1, 2007

Since much of the previous research on exit exams, including CEP's own work, has looked at national patterns of implementation and passing rates, this study aimed to benefit policy and practice by focusing on the local level. In particular, we conducted case studies in Jackson and Austin that examined how classroom instruction and other initiatives are preparing students for exit exams, as well as how these exams are affecting students’ engagement in learning and their plans for postsecondary education.

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The Hidden Costs of High School Exit Exams

Author(s): Hoor Bhanpuri and Susan K. Sexton
Published: September 19, 2006

The Center on Education Policy together with Learning Point Associates hosted a Webcast titled “The Hidden Costs of High School Exit Exams” on September 19th from 2-3 p.m. (EST). The purpose of this Webcast was to provide information to educational stakeholders about the costs of high school exit exam policies at the state and district levels.

ACCESS THE WEBCAST (Please use Replay # 1494134404) 

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How Have High School Exit Exams Changed Our Schools: Some Perspectives from Virginia and Maryland

Author(s): Keith Gayler
Published: June 9, 2005

Report on the impact of exit exams in a Maryland and a Virginia school district in the winter of 2004-2005.

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Pay Now or Pay Later: The Hidden Costs of High School Exit Exams

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

Preview of findings from the CEP's report, PAY NOW OR PAY LATER: The Hidden Costs of High School Exit Exams, looks at the extra costs of implementing the No Child Left Behind Act's mandated exit exams.

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Measuring The Cost of State High School Exit Exams

Author(s): Douglas Rose, John Myers
Published: February 1, 2003

Using Indiana as the case study researchers examined the costs of instituting statewide exit exams.

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