See the excellent article, "Coming Soon to Your Favorite Credential Program; National Exit Exams," by Ann Berlak in the current issue of Rethinking Schools.
Ann is a faculty member at San Francisco State. I have recently heard from students at San Francisco State about their experiences with PACT.
PACT ( called Performance Assessment) was imposed on many CSU campuses in the last three years. It forces teaches in training to divert as much as 1/3 of their time toward test preparation rather than teaching. Student teachers are pushed away from originality and creativity in teaching.
In one of my own semesters, some 3 students out of 24 did not pass PACT. But, they were not the weakest students in the cohort. They were the most creative, the most divergent. The students who pass PACT easily are the least creative. They modify their instruction the least to encourage critical thinking. A group of faculty have tried to stop PACT, but we have been unable to change it. Our unions helped a little.