“They both moved the goal posts back and moved the crossbar higher,” said Deborah Bloch, a volunteer math teacher at Academy of Hope.
The test also costs more, partly because a for-profit company is helping to administer it.
The changes have created headaches for the underfunded, nonprofit schools and other groups that prepare students for the GED. It’s going to take longer to teach the average adult student to pass the new test. Many already need two years.
In her 15 years teaching GED prep classes, Davis never needed to teach such a high a level of math. Now, she not only needs to rewrite her curriculum to better prepare her students — she also has to brush up on her own skills.
"It's math that I have to re-teach myself," Davis said. "It went to a much higher level. It's hard."
"It’s much harder for people to pass it. … And one of our biggest concerns with the exam is that we pushed the bar up on the GED, but we didn’t shore up the system where adults are taking classes to study for that exam." – Lecester Johnson
New York state has awarded an $8.4 million, three-year contract to a unit of McGraw-Hill Cos. to create an exam that will replace the GED as the state’s main high-school equivalency test.
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