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High Stakes Testing

Hey, Hey, Cuomo, Your Education Plan Has Got to Go

Ian Reifowitz | Posted 03.17.2015 | Education
Ian Reifowitz

What is Gov. Andrew Cuomo's plan? He offers increased funding, but only if his reforms on teacher evaluation and so-called merit pay are also adopted. But the reality is that using students' results on standardized tests to measure the effectiveness of teachers -- also known as Value Added Assessment (VAM) -- is simply not supported by research on the matter.

It's Just the Start of the Winter/Spring Testing Season, and Already...

John Thompson | Posted 03.13.2015 | Education
John Thompson

Since the beginning of bubble-in mania, also known as corporate reform, learning has typically stagnated during the winter test-prep season and halted for the school year with the April testing season. With Common Core, however, children have already taken their seats in front of computer screens and started their seemingly endless high-stakes assessments.

Understanding Test Anxiety and What We Can Do to Help Children

Rebecca Jackson | Posted 03.10.2015 | Education
Rebecca Jackson

A staggering 16-20% of students have high test anxiety, making it the most frequent academic impairment in our schools today Another 18% are troubled by moderately-high test anxiety. These students actually draw a "blank" or "freeze-up" during tests.

U.S. Dept. of Ed Wanted Much More Testing From PARCC and Smarter Balanced

Mercedes Schneider | Posted 03.04.2015 | Education
Mercedes Schneider

That said, I have also looked at the background on the CCSS and federal funding for PARCC and SBAC tests. USDE had a test-funding plan for the CCSS in April 2010, before the CCSS were published in June. By September 2010, grants were awarded to the PARCC and SBAC groups to begin test development at roughly $300 million total.

Opting Out of PARCC Testing for Children With Special Needs

Laurie Levy | Posted 03.03.2015 | Education
Laurie Levy

As usual, it is those who need the most help who are crushed under the heel of the educational-industrial complex.

Demand More of The Core

Tom Caramanno | Posted 02.27.2015 | Education
Tom Caramanno

As someone who works in the field of education, I witness daily the impact of the Common Core on children. Many students are indeed struggling to adapt to the standards and there are inherent flaws to them.

Anya Kamenetz's 'The Test' Points the Way to the Future

John Thompson | Posted 02.25.2015 | Education
John Thompson

With the rise of the Millennials, who best know the harsh truth about high-stakes testing, and the "creepy" implications of data-driven stigmatization and tracking of children, the days of test-driven reform should be numbered.

Yong Zhao Explains America's 'Faustian Bargain'

John Thompson | Posted 02.19.2015 | Education
John Thompson

I can understand why some Americans have flirted with high-stakes testing. The authoritarianism of a single, test-driven ladder to economic success has an enduring power. But I don't understand reformers who gamble that they can grab the benefits of a single, controlled path to improving education outputs without losing our creativity, individuality, diversity, and innovative talents.

The High Stakes of Life and Death

Michael Beyer | Posted 02.18.2015 | Education
Michael Beyer

I became an educator because I believe in the power of schools to change people's lives and to ensure a more equitable society for all. Yet high stakes tests have only furthered the inequity by punishing schools and communities that are already struggling.

By Any Dreams Necessary, Malcolm X and the Problem of High Stakes Testing

Yohuru Williams | Posted 02.10.2015 | Black Voices
Yohuru Williams

Malcolm X faced the kind of racial determinism that many students of color have become accustomed to today. Proponents of high stakes testing resurrect such determinism, presumably without the racial overtones, by reducing students, their hopes and dreams for the future, to test scores.

Learning From Failure

John Thompson | Posted 02.09.2015 | Education
John Thompson

Most innovations fail. And like NPR Planet Money's Adam Davidson explains, "life span of innovations has never shorter, meaning that failure happens more quickly." So it is not too soon to start to contemplate of the obituaries of the contemporary school reform movement.

Pearson and Testing Buddies Try to Shut the Barn Door (But the Info Is Already Out)

Alan Singer | Posted 02.09.2015 | Education
Alan Singer

Educational decisions should not be about what is best for students, what is most important to know, or what promotes active citizenship in democratic societies. Decisions are made based on what is easiest to test, digitize, and outsource.

Let's Rank Everybody

Alan Singer | Posted 03.09.2015 | Education
Alan Singer

Politicians like Andrew Cuomo and Arne Duncan are very excited about using data collection for teachers and Schools of Education. Here are my recommendations for ranking other professions and people as well.

Duncan's Scapegoat Ate His Homework

Michael Beyer | Posted 03.23.2015 | Education
Michael Beyer

If the theory of action behind NCLB is that better education will lead to less disparity, the data suggest this theory is dead wrong.

Lessons from Chile: Annual Testing in Schools

Gary Anderson | Posted 03.16.2015 | Education
Gary Anderson

While research evidence does not support current pro-choice and high stakes accountability reforms, their ideological appeal seems widespread. Perhaps we can learn from a country in which these neoliberal policies were imposed before they became prominent in the U.S.

Andrew Cuomo Has the "Chutzpah" to Blame Teachers and a Veteran Teacher Responds

Alan Singer | Posted 03.14.2015 | Education
Alan Singer

Cuomo has "chutzpah," especially when it comes to public education. Two weeks ago, he vetoed himself, refusing to sign a bill he had previously endorsed, because he decided it should be easier to fire teachers.

A Fifth-Grader Discusses Common Core

Alan Singer | Posted 02.20.2015 | Education
Alan Singer

This is the interview with my granddaughter, a fifth-grader discusses Common Core.

Who Are Our Masters?

Michael Beyer | Posted 02.18.2015 | Education
Michael Beyer

We need to scrap all of our systems and begin by asking our students and teachers what they need. This is a radical proposition, but it is also simple and the most effective.

Accountability for the Top 95 Percent

Robert E. Slavin | Posted 02.10.2015 | Education
Robert E. Slavin

Moving to a focus on evidence-based reform will not solve all of the contentious issues about accountability, but it could help us focus the reform conversation on how to move forward the top 95% of teachers and schools -- the ones who teach 95% of our kids -- and how to put accountability in proper proportion.

Common Core and the Death of Reading

Alan Singer | Posted 01.03.2015 | Education
Alan Singer

The Common Core approach to reading is like breaking a molecule down into individual elements. Once you break the molecular bonds that tie the atoms together, you lose all the properties of the original chemical. You now have hydrogen and oxygen, but you no longer have water.

Debating Common Core: Beware Decomposing Numbers and Rinky-Dink Assessments

Alan Singer | Posted 11.19.2014 | Education
Alan Singer

Intelligence Squared U.S. sponsored a debate September 9, 2014 on the Common Core State Standards. Four participants argued whether American schools s...

Japanese Educators Learn From American Teachers and Schools

Alan Singer | Posted 11.15.2014 | Education
Alan Singer

Who would have thought that educators from Japan, whose school system is always paraded before the American public as one that the United States should emulate, would actually visit New York City to learn how to improve education in Japanese schools?

A Back-to-School Supply List for Administrators and Policymakers

Alyssa Hadley Dunn | Posted 11.11.2014 | Education
Alyssa Hadley Dunn

Some of the supplies listed are for students, some are for teachers, and some are for you, so that you can better understand what teachers need and do. We'll start with the "easy" supplies first -- the literal ones.

Teaching as a Subversive Activity

Arnold Dodge | Posted 10.27.2014 | Education
Arnold Dodge

One way to reverse the trend of the corporatization of our schools, the "yield returns" mentality, is to re-imagine a new future in the "subversive" classroom.

Arne Duncan Declares Victory in War on Schools and Teachers

Alan Singer | Posted 10.25.2014 | Education
Alan Singer

I found three of Duncan's statements particularly ironic. He wrote about his continuing commitment to a "spirit of flexibility," flexibility that is completely lacking in Race to the Top mandates.