Tuesday, March 11, 2014

ISTEP: Not as Intended

For Further Reading:
  • Test Today, Privatize Tomorrow: Using Accountability to "Reform" Public Schools to Death
  • Of the many schools and districts that are obviously struggling, how many have received the resources they need, at least without a court order? If conservatives are sincere in saying they want more testing in order to determine where help is needed, what has their track record been in providing that help? The answer is painfully obvious, of course: Many of the same people who justify more standardized tests for information-gathering purposes have also claimed that more money doesn’t produce improvement. The Bush administration’s proposed budgets have fallen far short of what states would need just to implement NCLB itself, and those who point this out are dismissed as malcontents. (Thus Bennett and Finn: “Democrats are now saying that Republicans are not spending enough. But that is what they always say – enough is never sufficient for them when it comes to education spending.”)
  • Indiana school grades align with poverty
  • The 2013 grades, approved recently by the Indiana State Board of Education, track pretty closely with the percentage of children who qualify for free and reduced-price school lunches. The fewer poor kids, the higher the grades, and vice versa.
  • Education Isn't Broken, Our Country Is
  • We don't have an education problem in America. We have a social disease. It is as though we are starving our children to death and trying to fix it by investing in more scales so we can weigh them constantly.
  • What Are Tests Really Measuring?: When Achievement Isn't Achievement
  • High-stakes standardized testing must be the most resilient phenomenon ever to exist on the planet. Joining high-stakes standardized testing in that (dis)honor would be the persistent but misleading claim that test scores are primarily achievement (and a growing future candidate for this honor is the claim that test scores by students, labeled “achievement,” are also credible metrics for “teacher quality”).

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