Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Teaching and Leadership


George Theoharis


High Stakes Testing, NYS Common Core Assessments, Teacher Evaluation, Testing Disconnect


New York State public school students in grades 3–8 are required to take the Common Core assessments, now based on Next Generation Learning Standards, in English language arts and mathematics. Students are also required to take English and Algebra Regents exams in high school. Elementary students who often perform on-grade level in the classroom frequently struggle on the spring Common Core assessments, yet successfully graduate from high school. This longitudinal study aimed to determine if the 3–6 assessments at the elementary level are related and predictive of how students would perform on high school English and Algebra Regents exams a decade later. This research also addresses how students designated as economically disadvantaged and students having a disability requiring an Individualized Educational Plan would perform on both state assessments given their identification by the school district.

Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to track 120 grade 3 students through their high school graduation by comparing their Common Core rubric scores in elementary school to their English and Algebra Regents exams percentages. Research findings indicate that regardless of how students performed on Common Core assessments English language arts in elementary school, students easily passed their high school English Regents exams. However, elementary students who struggled with lower rubric scores in mathematics passed their Algebra Regents exams, but at lower proficiency levels. In addition, students designated as economically disadvantaged were able to pass their high school Regents exams at passage rates equal to their peers, indicating this designation of poverty had no bearing on a student’s performance. However, students identified by the school district as having a disability requiring an Individualized Educational Plan did struggle on both their elementary Common Core assessments and high school Regents exams.

This longitudinal study adds to this under researched topic of comparing elementary students’ testing performance on New York State assessments to their high school performance levels on English and Algebra Regents exams.


Open Access