Press Releases / MBAE In The News

October 15, 2015

MBAE Response to Report on MCAS and PARCC

Download and print the MBAE statement here (Boston) October 15, 2015 – The Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education (MBAE) appreciates the thorough attention Secretary Peyser and the Executive Office of Education (EOE) are paying to the need to set high standards at every grade level and provide an accurate measure […]
October 15, 2015

MBAE Response to Mathematica Policy Research Study

Download and print the MBAE statement here (Boston) October 14, 2015 – The Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education today rejected suggestions that simply raising the bar for math on the MCAS could be a serious alternative to the higher standards of the Partnership for Assessment of College and Career Readiness (PARCC) test, urging state education officials […]
September 24, 2015

Boston Superintendent Chang “praised the PARCC exam”

The Boston Globe reports that new Boston Public Schools Superintendent Tommy Chang “praised the PARCC exam” in an interview.  Chang told the Globe that PARCC is “far more robust at assessing critical thinking for our kids’’ and that he “supports Common Core standards and hopes the debate around PARCC will not derail schools’ […]
September 21, 2015

MBAE Response to Preliminary PARCC Results

Statement can be attributed to Linda Noonan, Executive Director, MBAE September 21, 2015 – The preliminary PARCC results released today don’t come as a surprise. This is a rigorous, complex, high-quality test that is aligned with the higher standards in place in Massachusetts schools. The MCAS test results, also released […]
September 18, 2015

ViewPoint: PARCC brings 21st century learning to Massachusetts

This Boston Business Journal op-ed features LearnLaunch co-founder and MBAE Board member, Eileen Rudden, who discusses the intersection of technology, college- and career-readiness and the Massachusetts school system. “As a technology executive, I have seen first-hand the value of technology in the classroom. From Smart Boards to smartphones, today’s students […]
September 2, 2015

MBAE Opposes Common Core Ballot Question

Today, the Attorney General certified Initiative Petition 15-12, a ballot measure that seeks to repeal the state’s 2010 adoption of the Common Core State Standards.  This action would: repeal the state’s college and career ready education standards and return to the outdated standards that the state had already started to revise […]
July 13, 2015

Columnist Rick Holmes: “PARCC is the readiness test”

Columnist Rick Holmes explores the PARCC debate and concludes: A lot of states are dropping Common Core and PARCC, mostly because of politics and embarrassment over failing scores. Massachusetts has always been an education leader, so it need not follow the others. Instead, it should find a way to ace […]
July 8, 2015

What is Student Data?

The Data Quality Campaign, a national nonprofit that supports the use of data to improve student achievement, provides the answer in this short video that we are pleased to share.   It is important for all of us to keep the facts about data in mind as the debate about assessments in […]
June 29, 2015

Foundation Budget Review Recommends Funding Adjustments

The Foundation Budget Review Commission will issue an interim report today, Tuesday, June 30th. When the report is officially released, MBAE will have its comments posted here.  Please come back later!
May 26, 2015

Vocational Technical Education in the Spotlight

Future Ready Massachusetts is a member of the Coalition for Vocational Technical Education (CVTE), a group committed to addressing the mismatch between available jobs and workforce skills, particularly among entry-level employees. Vocational education increasingly serves as a bridge to jobs particularly as many jobs require some postsecondary education and training […]
May 26, 2015

PARCC Hearings Underway

Last month, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education announced that it would hold public forums across the state to give the public an opportunity to share their views about replacing MCAS exams with PARCC student assessments. The first forum, held April 28 in Fitchburg, addressed general test administration issues while a second […]
May 26, 2015

Comparing MCAS and PARCC – A Look at the Test Questions

MBAE’s longtime commitment to high standards for learning and an assessment system that measures student progress and holds school systems accountable for performance compelled us to pay close attention to the adoption of the Common Core State Standards in Massachusetts.   Similarly, we, and the employers we represent, have a lot at […]
April 13, 2015

Mass. education leaders see lack of readiness as threat to economy

Originally published in The Berkshire Eagle |  APRIL 13, 2015. By Tony Dobrowolski PITTSFIELD — The numbers are both encouraging and disturbing. The number of state high school graduates rose 31 percent between 1997 and 2008, and the state’s dropout rate is at its lowest point in 30 years. But the number […]
March 24, 2015

Foundation Budget Review – An Opportunity to Update Funding System

The Foundation Budget Review Commission held its sixth and last public hearing on the re-examination of the Chapter 70 school finance law on March 9th in Boston.  MBAE testified for funding strategies that will make effective use of resources to support a high quality education system that prepares all students to […]
March 24, 2015

PARCC Test Fairness and Security

The business community relies heavily on data for measuring and understanding its performance and opportunities.  So, it is no surprise that MBAE has strongly supported the effective use of data to improve instruction and assess the performance of many aspects of our education system.  Regardless of why or how data is collected, […]
February 12, 2015

MCAS sets bar too low for employment demands, group claims

Originally published in The Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise |  FEBRUARY 12, 2015 By Colleen Quinn STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE BOSTON — A statewide business organization says the MCAS test does not adequately assess whether a high school student is ready for college or a career, primarily because the content of the test […]
February 12, 2015

New report finds MCAS test does not indicate college and career readiness: First comparative analysis of MCAS and PARCC shows MCAS proficiency criteria based largely on middle school content

(BOSTON) February 12, 2015 — The Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) does not indicate a student’s preparedness for post-high school success according to a report released today by the Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education (MBAE).  The lack of alignment with college and career expectations has resulted in high remediation rates […]
February 11, 2015

MCAS v PARCC as Indicators of College and Career Readiness

This year, Massachusetts will make a decision as monumental as the one made in 1993 when the Commonwealth adopted standards-based education reforms that propelled us to the top of the nation on many measures of student achievement.  Our choice will be whether to continue with the state’s own Massachusetts Comprehensive […]
February 5, 2015

Building on What Works

Massachusetts’ economic vitality and  leadership in innovation depend on the state staying ahead of the national curve in education.  The business community must do all we can to keep our foot on the pedal of progress.  Over the past two decades, we have learned a lot about what all students need […]
February 2, 2015

Presidential Politics and the Common Core

Karen Nussle, Executive Director of the Collaborative for Student Success recently shared some information we think is worth repeating.  This blog post draws heavily on that information. With the 2016 presidential campaign already gaining steam, some presidential candidates who originally supported Common Core are now having to explain . In Iowa last weekend, […]
January 22, 2015

Educating Your Future Workforce: A Call to Action for Employers

Of all the policy imperatives facing the Baker administration, there is none more relevant to our economic future than public education.  Preparing future generations with the knowledge demands of our 21st century economy is perhaps the most critical component of our economic success.  Unfortunately, our shortfalls in this area are becoming […]
November 23, 2014

Public Opinion About Education

MBAE congratulates and looks forward to working with Governor-Elect Charlie Baker and the newly elected and returning legislators who are taking on the responsibility to ensure our public schools educate every child for success.  Reaching that goal, we believe, will require major changes to modernize just about every aspect of education.  Do […]
October 27, 2014

Accountability Mistake Impacts Charter Schools

MBAE has been a strong supporter of developing assessments that give students and their families an honest measure of whether a child is performing at grade level.  This is essential to ensure a student is on track to graduate ready to pursue college, career or other pathways without need for […]
September 19, 2014

MBAE 2014 MCAS Results Statement

September 19, 2014 – MCAS scores released today show widespread stagnation that has serious implications for our students entering a knowledge-based workforce requiring education and skills far beyond what MCAS measures.  PDF Format | Download
August 1, 2014

Education and Workforce Preparedness

Our friends at Achieve, Inc. have given us permission to reprint their excellent materials when we see information that will be of interest to the Massachusetts business community.  This commentary focuses on the workforce issues that are of concern to all of us and appeared in Achieve’s Perspective Newsletter yesterday. […]
July 31, 2014

Tech Bond Bill to Help Modernize Schools

A bond bill for government technology worth $1 billion, including $38 million for a public school district broadband access improvement grant program, has been approved by the Massachusetts House and Senate and now goes to Governor Patrick for his signature. H 4355 is a vital piece of legislation as Massachusetts […]
July 30, 2014

Higher Education’s Role in Standards and Assessments

Each week, the Department of Higher Education issues a weekly digest of news clips that provides updates on what is going on at various campuses around the state.  This week, the digest (subscribe at the DHE website link above) also provided some interesting perspectives on  the Common Core and PARCC. […]
July 16, 2014

Legislature Misses Opportunity to Improve Student Achievement

“An Act to Improve Student Achievement” was the title of the original bill that was amended beyond recognition and rejected by the Senate in a 25-14 vote today. That proposal would have built on the 2010 Achievement Gap Act by extending the management flexibilities that have been so critical to […]
June 30, 2014

Using Assessments to Inform Instruction

Laura Slover, CEO of PARCC, Inc., the nonprofit managing the assessment project for the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) states, began her career as a high school English teacher.  In a recent update, she wrote about how she used assessments to find her students’ strengths and […]
June 22, 2014

Teacher Prep Review Charts Course to Improvement

  For the second year, the National Council on Teacher Quality has reviewed 2400 teacher education programs across the country and found many lacking.  Findings released last week reveal mixed results for Massachusetts.  The good news is that the Commonwealth is making progress by instituting some of the policies shown to make a […]
June 22, 2014

Transforming Human Capital Key to School Improvement

The Boston Public Schools have a plan for driving improvements in the city’s schools that is both exciting and likely to bring about very positive results for children.  Interim Superintendent John McDonough and Assistant Superintendent for Human Capital Ross Wilson have made a strong commitment to great teachers and school […]
May 19, 2014

Prepared for College? Massachusetts 12th Grade NAEP Results

There is a new measure from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) tying 12th grade results to college preparedness.  In 2009, for the first time, NAEP reported state results for 12th Graders from 11 volunteer pilot states including Massachusetts, as well as overall national results.  At that time we […]
May 18, 2014

Beacon Hill Update

Budget Moves to Senate; House to Act on Bill to Improve Student Achievement May is always a busy month, but it is especially so this year as legislators work to complete the Massachusetts Budget for fiscal year 2015 and wrap up action on bills for the 2013-14 session before the […]
May 15, 2014

Time for Truth in Assessing College and Career Readiness

We routinely teach our children the importance of honesty and telling the truth, even when it is difficult or uncomfortable.   But, for years, we have been giving our children the false impression that passing the MCAS exams and earning good grades means they are ready to do college work […]
May 7, 2014

DESE Seeking Volunteers for Educator Licensure Working Groups

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has issued a call for volunteers to join Working Groups that will develop recommendations for subject matter knowledge required for educator licensure.  This is a critically important endeavor with the potential to not only raise the stature of the teaching profession but […]
May 1, 2014

PARCC Answers Questions

In late March, Rick Hess, Director of Education Policy Studies at the American Enterprise Institute,  wrote a column in Education Week with three questions for the two consortia of states that have developed assessments aligned to the Common Core State Standards. The questions were about test reliability, in light of […]
April 28, 2014

PARCC a Topic for Dept. of Elementary & Secondary Education Board

Commissioner of Higher Education Richard Freeland is joining the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) at their monthly meeting tonight to discuss “options for transition of the high school Competency Determination (CD) requirements – that is, the state standards that students must meet to qualify for high school graduation […]
April 28, 2014

New Action to Improve Teacher Preparation

The U.S. Department of Education is moving forward with a plan to improve the recruitment and preparation of our nation’s teachers.  This is welcome news since educator preparation programs have been shown to lack the rigor and training needed for effective teaching, as the infographic below from the Department shows. […]
April 24, 2014

Common Core Controversy Continues

Four years in to implementation of college and career-ready standards in English Language Arts and mathematics, opponents of the state-led, voluntary effort continue raising objections based on their version of the process used to develop the standards.   Since the handful of disenchanted “experts” who take issue with the content […]
April 2, 2014

An education model worth exploring

Originally published in the Boston Globe |  APRIL 02, 2014. By Scot Lehigh. AFTER TWO decades of education reform efforts, it’s useful to have an outsider’s perspective — particularly when that outsider has had as wide-ranging a career as international education expert Sir Michael Barber. The protean Brit has been a teacher. He’s […]
April 1, 2014

Time to take a new educational approach in Massachusetts

Originally published in the Taunton Daily Gazette | April 1, 2014. By Linda Noonan. On many measures of student achievement, Massachusetts schools are the best in the nation. We are rightfully proud of that accomplishment, but have work ahead to maintain that lead and make it one that applies to […]
April 1, 2014

Linda Noonan, Guest Opinion: Time to take a new educational approach in Massachusetts

Originally published in the Taunton Daily Gazette | April 1, 2014. By Linda Noonan. On many measures of student achievement, Massachusetts schools are the best in the nation. We are rightfully proud of that accomplishment, but have work ahead to maintain that lead and make it one that applies to […]
April 1, 2014

Despite Lofty Scores, Massachusetts Advised to Set New Ed. Goals

Originally published in Education Week | April 1, 2014. By Sean Cavanagh. Even though Massachusetts is one of the highest-flying states by academic reputation and test-score rankings, it needs to shake up how it operates and push ahead with a series of ambitious changes to its education system to avoid slipping […]
March 27, 2014

MBAE on Boston Network News

BNN interviews Linda Noonan. Aired 03-27-14.
March 27, 2014

WCVB-TV Editorial: State of Massachusetts’ Education System

Originally published on wcvb.com | Bill Fine, WCVB-TV President and General Manager. Gov. Deval Patrick proudly touts the state’s education system, citing high student test scores and graduation rates.  And rightly so.  Massachusetts has consistently ranked toward the top. That lofty status, however, may be at risk.  According to a new […]
March 25, 2014

Many Mass. companies can’t find skilled workers

Originally published in South Coast Today | March 25, 2014. BOSTON — A Massachusetts business group called for changes in the state’s education system in light of a report released Monday that shows more than two-thirds of the state’s employers report difficulty hiring appropriately skilled employees. Bolstering the state’s public […]
March 25, 2014

Mass. schools must be transformed to compete globally

Originally published in the Boston Globe | MARCH 25, 2014. By Michael Barber and Henry C. Dinger. While Massachusetts is widely acknowledged to have the best-performing students in the nation, at least as measured by national and international test scores, there are increasing signs that educational progress in the state has stalled. […]
March 24, 2014

Report Finds Massachusetts Education System Needs Major Overhaul to Prepare Students to Compete in Global Economy

(Boston) — March 24, 2014 – Massachusetts business leaders today released a comprehensive assessment of the Commonwealth’s education system, sounding the alarm that student achievement has levelled off and the state risks falling behind global competitors who are outpacing the Commonwealth in educating a highly skilled workforce and informed, engaged […]
March 24, 2014

New Report Offers A Vision for Education in the Next 20 Years

Twenty years ago, the Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education and the business community played a leading role in bringing about changes that propelled our state to the top of the nation on most measures of K-12 education performance.  But we all know that the skills-gap present in our workforce results […]
March 24, 2014

The New Opportunity to Lead

In the Constitution adopted in 1780 and in force today, the people of Massachusetts recognized that the “opportunities and advantages of education” were “necessary for the preservation of their rights had liberties,” and directed the representatives of the people to “cherish the interests of literature and the sciences, and all […]
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