We should stop obsessing about test scores and start obsessing about the health and well-being of children and their families. The gains would be far more valuable than a few points on a standardized test.
Decoupling? Not going to happen. You can't have a data system without tagging, and you can't have a tagging system with nothing to tag. Education and teaching are just collateral damage in all this, and not really the main thing at all.
Designing a plan without the leadership of those who know the system best is more like misanthropy than philanthropy. For those who tell me they want to assist our schools, I will not sign on until I know educators are at the center of the decision making.
All are complex problems, entwined in money, ideology and bureaucracy and exceedingly difficult to repair. But there is one broken element in public education that is apolitical in nature and costs zero to fix.
The controversy over standardized testing was given new focus by the recent Chicago teachers strike. One of their major objections was to having the Chicago Board of Education use these tests heavily to determine teacher competence.
Over the past decade, these principals had a front-row seat as they watched NCLB and related policies create perverse incentives to teach to the test and narrow curriculum, they are pushing back against ramping up those incentives.
How do teachers resist the culture of high stakes testing and the continued participation in a system that is clearly not pedagogically sound and is purposively destructive to children, teachers, schools and communities?