I just noticed this item from the wire feed on the NY Times website. Two groups of states have been given $330 million to develop new, better, tests to be ready by 2014-15. I've argued many times (see here, here, here, here, and here) before that the only way we can continue to use test-based accountability in the future is if we adopt national standards and a national test. A year ago I thought we were likely at least a decade away from the former, but both seem to be approaching far more rapidly than I could've imagined.
If you're pro-test-based accountability, this should make you happy -- these developments will make such systems more accurate and more meaningful . . . plus, politically, this is the only way such systems will survive into the next decade.
If you're anti-test-based accountability, you might have mixed feelings -- these developments will make the current testing regime more accurate and more meaningful, but it also likely means that it's not going away any time soon.