Friday, February 6, 2015

Principal: What I’ve learned about annual standardized testing

No Child Left Behind requires that students take an annual standardized test for purposes of holding schools “accountable” from Grades 3-8 and once in high school. Whether such annual testing is now being hotly debated as congress begins deliberations over the reauthorization of the bill. Here’s an article from the Washington Post looking at this issue, by Principal Carol Burris of South Side High School in New York.
"Because of NCLB and now Common Core testing, I have witnessed schools move from progressive practices such as inclusion, to the grouping of special education students with ELLs and other struggling learners into “double period” classes where they are drilled to pass the test. We are seeing a resurgence in elementary school of “ability grouping,” which predictably results in classes that are segregated by race and wealth. Worse of all, a plethora of bad policies have emerged that use yearly testing results as their basis."

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