Sunday, January 17, 2010

Standardized Tests

I used to blog for my old company, but they took the blog down. I am
not actually allowed to own the writings I put up on that blog, but as
I reference them on occasion in my writing I am putting those articles
up in my archives here for reference sake. I'll put the tag GS on those
articles noting that they were originally published on the

Standardized Tests

May 8, 2008 – 5:19 am by Brendan

Two interesting interviews on standardized testing. Though I really wish they would have actually found a teacher who was pro-testing. I’m sure there is one or two out there.

Anyway, I thought the quote from the parent in the first interview was interesting. In explanation for why it was important for her child to do well, she said: “Before No Child Left Behind no one believed my daughter could pass these tests. They didn’t have to believe in her and so they didn’t.”

In the second interview, I thought the best quote was from the teacher when the reporter asked, why do you know better than the federal government – state educators, “I’m trained, teachers are the ones who have been trained to work with children and educate them.”

Some parents feel NCLB accountability gives them leverage to force change. What it really is, is a federal program expanding the size of the federal government to do what local school boards should be doing.

Some teachers feel standardized tests are the worst possible way to gauge learning of a child. Giving one test that means everything and doesn’t account for the vast diversity in our population may not be great, but it could also be worse.

If I am ever appointed Education Secretary, I will be sure to do something about this testing nonsense. Until that time, it is up to we teachers and parents to make to best of a bad situation. If we want real change in our schools try going to a school board meeting once a month.(If you want to know where call your local school) Chances are the board will be larger than the audience.

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