Illinois’ public school kids will soon find it harder to make a good grade on the state-mandated tests. The state school board approved Superintendent Chris Koch’s request for stricter standards. “We have twenty years of data in this state showing when we raise the college/career-ready benchmark in the ACT, we’ve had progress every year,” said Koch. “We now are outperforming all states who offer universal ACT.”
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As for teachers who are concerned about simply “teaching to the test,” Koch has this advice: “You’re teaching to the standards … We now have comparable standards all across the country around English, language arts, and math.” The more stringent standards are intended to better comply with what are known as Common Core State Standards. “I’m not getting love letters from all superintendents,” Koch admits.