Peter Greene asks a crucial question: What have we gained–or lost–because of our society’s obsession with standardized testing for at least the last two decades?
When did it start? Before No Child Left Behind was signed into law in January 2002, but not with the same intensity or the high-stakes that took hold since 2002, when the power of the federal government was used to pummel state’s and districts to comply with federal mandates.
This is one of Peter Greene’s most powerful posts. I urge you to read it.
“After years of hearing how kindergarten has been turned into the new first grade, you’d think at the other end of the K-12 pipeline we would find highly advanced students. And yet– not so much
“I am not going to report a ton of research on this, because the available research is bogus and part of the actual test-centric problem. What I can tell you is what I, as an actual real live classroom teacher who knows actual real live classroom teachers, see and hear.
“This is the result of accelerated early instruction done primarily in the service of test-centric schooling (“We have to get them started early– otherwise how will they be ready for the Big Standardized Test??”)
“It is lost years.
“By the time these same start-em-early push-em-hard students arrive at high school classrooms, they are behind compared to the students that we saw twenty-five or fifteen or even ten years ago. They know fewer things, have fewer skills, and express lower academic aspirations.
“Why? I can offer a couple of theories.
They have learned to hate reading.
“They have learned that reading is this thing you do with short, disconnected, context-free selections, and when you read, you are not looking for something that sparks interest or enjoyment or curiosity or wonder or …read more
Source: Diane Ravitch Common Core