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A Celtic monastery
CLAS was a standards-based assessment based on Outcomes Based Education principles given in California in the early 1990s. It was based on concepts of new standards such as whole language and reform mathematics. Instead of multiple choice tests with one correct answer, it used open written responses that were graded according to rubrics. Such tests were thought to be fairer to students of all abilities. Failure rates among all groups, particularly minorities, was so high that it generated concern. It was terminated in 1995 by the governor after two years. Maureen DiMarco testified to the California State Legislature in charge of the [CLAS] that no graders were allowed to give a "4" top score in mathematics in the first year. It was based on open responses scored holistically, so that the correct answer to how to share 5 apples among 4 people might be to give the 5th to a food bank. Minorities scored even lower than on standardized tests, huge numbers scored in the lowest categories, as open response questions with more than one answer proved to be even more difficult than multiple choice problems. It was replaced by STAR, which is a testing system based on traditional rigorous academic standards which largely discards the theory of outcome-based education which was widely rejected by the late 1990s in the United States.
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