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High-Stakes Testing, Latinos and Limited English Proficient Students: Lessons from Colorado

Publisher: Bilingual Research Journal, 27 (1)
Page Numbers: 25-49

In Colorado, the Colorado Student Assessment Program (CSAP) has been created as the performance standard to determine progress that Colorado students are making toward meeting content standards. This study utilized results of the CSAP across 3 years (1999–2001) to determine the impact that standards-based education in Colorado is having on Latino students in general, and on Latino English language learners (ELLs) specifically. Results indicate that the percentage of Latinos meeting state standards as measured by the Spanish CSAP is equivalent to, and in some cases higher, than the percentage of Latinos who are taking the CSAP in English. This study found that school report card grades are lower in schools with large numbers of ELLs; this raises questions about the negative impact of school report card grades on schools that have high numbers of ELLs.