Let’s say that I am at the end of my freshman year of high school in Louisiana. I must take two Louisiana Educational Assessment Program (LEAP) exams: English I and Algebra I. So long as I minimally pass these exams (“approaching basic”), I am good for graduation three years from now. Furthermore, my state exam score counts as my final exam in the class (between 15 and 30 percent of my fourth quarter grade, according to state specifications; see below).
If I score the highest level on my LEAP exams (“advanced”), then I get an A as an exam grade. If I score the second highest level (“mastery”), I get a B. The third level, “basic,” gets me a C, and the fourth (and lowest passing) level, “approaching basic,” earns a D.
Given that the state exams last between 225 and 260 minutes each, I might zoom through…
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