Glenarden, MD – July 24th, 2020 – The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has awarded AdaptiveX, an industry-leading adaptive testing company, with $305,000 in project funds to be a fundamental contributor in the Department’s Cultural Proficiency Professional Development project. The project tasks AdaptiveX with analyzing and understanding culturally sustaining practices, pedagogy, and environments, as well as becoming well familiarized with the underlying details and structures that feed into systemic inequities, from implicit biases to common educational policies.
Founded out of Glenarden, MD, with endeavors spanning across the country, AdaptiveX is no stranger to tackling systemic inequity in education. Adaptive Testing is an AI evaluation approach to get better and more accurate scoring while asking fewer, more precise questions. This technology and approach can be used in any question and response context, such as recruitment, candidate evaluations, employee training, and, of course, education.
By continuously gauging a test-taker’s progress and responses and providing appropriately challenging questions, Adaptive Testing provides a more precise evaluation that bridges certain systemic gaps, gaps that traditional testing foster and grow. This allows for the needs of all students to be met throughout a school system and district. Bridging these gaps certainly does not stop at better testing, however.
Students come from diverse backgrounds and socioeconomic situations, which is why a one-size-fits-all approach cannot and has not been working. Engaging students in with “authentic and rigorous learning experiences that honor learner’s cultural capacity” is a dynamic educational approach that fosters progress and growth in any situation, as per AdaptiveX’s website. This approach is known as Culturally Responsive Teaching, and to be able to execute it properly, schools and teachers need the appropriate practices and training. AdaptiveX offers CRT support and coaching, as well as workshops and other resources.
This specialization in Culturally Responsive Teaching Practices is precisely what allowed AdaptiveX to stand out in the competitive bid. The comprehensive, research-based program is to be implemented in over a dozen districts throughout the state of Massachusetts, providing workshops, equity landscape analysis, virtual coaching, and much more.
The death of George Floyd and subsequent, widespread cries for social and racial justice bring to light once again that now, and always, systemic inequities at every level of society lead to inequality in public health and the justice system. The services provided by AdaptiveX, to be implemented through the DESE project, shed a light on these gaps and provide solutions towards making school systems more equitable for all students.