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Old 08-13-2022, 11:54 AM
 
3,446 posts, read 5,994,040 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Gringo View Post
With 22 years of teaching HS science under my belt, I have a take on what's wrong. There are many factors involved, but the single biggest improvement would be:

End the high stakes standardized testing program that is the be-all and end-all in evaluating public schools.

The damage done by this program is deep, broad, but not irreversible.
I agree with you wholeheartedly. When you look at what elementary students have to do on those tests, one would see why students aren't scoring proficient.
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Old 08-13-2022, 07:38 PM
 
15,283 posts, read 14,072,901 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antredd View Post
I agree with you wholeheartedly. When you look at what elementary students have to do on those tests, one would see why students aren't scoring proficient.
What does that mean?
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Old 08-14-2022, 12:44 AM
 
Location: Lost in Montana *recalculating*...
16,820 posts, read 19,584,199 times
Reputation: 18960
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Gringo View Post
With 22 years of teaching HS science under my belt, I have a take on what's wrong. There are many factors involved, but the single biggest improvement would be:

End the high stakes standardized testing program that is the be-all and end-all in evaluating public schools.

The damage done by this program is deep, broad, but not irreversible.
I agree. My kids thrived in public schools, but took the standardized tests (ACT) several time just to improve scores to make sure they were eligible for tuition free in state University education.

My son is done with undergrad in Mechanical Engineering and moving on to a PhD program in Colorado (paid).

The test was nothing more than a score to to ensure eligibility for tuition free. He was already bright and sufficient. Do away with standard tests- let educators do their thing and recommend people based on their real knowledge and performance.

Educators AND kids should not be judged on this. There is so much more involved than a damned number.

Last edited by Threerun; 08-14-2022 at 01:06 AM..
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Old 08-14-2022, 07:32 AM
 
4,820 posts, read 2,266,204 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
What does that mean?
I agree. We lived in MA, but my kids took the the Iowa testing every year in grammar school. The testing was an accurate account of their abilities. It rarely changed from year to year. In fact, their SAT/GRE scores were consisted with their Iowa test scores from grammar school.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Threerun View Post
Do away with standard tests- let educators do their thing and recommend people based on their real knowledge and performance.
The problem is the political influences on educators now vs. when our kids were young.
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Old 08-14-2022, 08:43 AM
 
15,283 posts, read 14,072,901 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Threerun View Post
I agree. My kids thrived in public schools, but took the standardized tests (ACT) several time just to improve scores to make sure they were eligible for tuition free in state University education.

My son is done with undergrad in Mechanical Engineering and moving on to a PhD program in Colorado (paid).

The test was nothing more than a score to to ensure eligibility for tuition free. He was already bright and sufficient. Do away with standard tests- let educators do their thing and recommend people based on their real knowledge and performance.

Educators AND kids should not be judged on this. There is so much more involved than a damned number.
Sans the ACT tests your kiddo took how would your state system decide whom to offer free tuition? Grades wouldn't work. There are too way too many graduating high schoolers with excellent grades.



We'll leave school to school rigor differences for another time.
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Old 08-14-2022, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Sun City West, Arizona
43,042 posts, read 18,690,104 times
Reputation: 28722
Quote:
Originally Posted by Threerun View Post
I agree. My kids thrived in public schools, but took the standardized tests (ACT) several time just to improve scores to make sure they were eligible for tuition free in state University education.

My son is done with undergrad in Mechanical Engineering and moving on to a PhD program in Colorado (paid).

The test was nothing more than a score to to ensure eligibility for tuition free. He was already bright and sufficient. Do away with standard tests- let educators do their thing and recommend people based on their real knowledge and performance.

Educators AND kids should not be judged on this. There is so much more involved than a damned number.
I agree. But schools should be held accountable for what they accomplish...or don't. Even as a former teacher and retired principal, this idea that we should just trust schools that they are doing a good job isn't the way it should work either. So the question is, how do you evaluate schools and personnel.
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Old 08-14-2022, 09:25 AM
 
15,283 posts, read 14,072,901 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YorktownGal View Post
I agree. We lived in MA, but my kids took the the Iowa testing every year in grammar school. The testing was an accurate account of their abilities. It rarely changed from year to year. In fact, their SAT/GRE scores were consisted with their Iowa test scores from grammar school.



The problem is the political influences on educators now vs. when our kids were young.
The guts of all this is pretty simple.

1. Per NAEP research in 1990 the average US HS GPA was 2.68, 2019 - 3.11, 2021 - 3.36 but that's likely a flier per covid. All of this due to driving for graduation rates. Anyway, from that and school to school rigor variances it's clear that high school grades do not offer nearly-enough resolution into per student college readiness.

2. I took the Iowa tests yearly as a kid. As I recall my scores made sense.


_____________________

IMO the current testing disdain springs from three main camps:

1. K-12 Teachers and administrators.......most teachers hate quantifiable accountability metrics.

2. Parents. Most parents tell their kids they can be and do anything. Tests help bust that lie. Further, most parents overestimate where their kid(s) is academically and intellectually.

3. CRT and equity over merit boosters...stay with me for a second. An important organization behind the anti-test movement is "FairTest." FairTest is a marketing arm of "The Urban League." The Urban League is a hard left advocacy group populated with CRT boosters for decades.


ETA - intersting. I just looked at FairTests webpage. They've purged any mention, that I can find, per the Urban League.

Last edited by EDS_; 08-14-2022 at 09:36 AM..
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Old 08-14-2022, 02:46 PM
 
10,477 posts, read 6,665,314 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
IMO the current testing disdain springs from three main camps:

1. K-12 Teachers and administrators.......most teachers hate quantifiable accountability metrics.

2. Parents. Most parents tell their kids they can be and do anything. Tests help bust that lie. Further, most parents overestimate where their kid(s) is academically and intellectually.

3. CRT and equity over merit boosters...stay with me for a second. An important organization behind the anti-test movement is "FairTest." FairTest is a marketing arm of "The Urban League." The Urban League is a hard left advocacy group populated with CRT boosters for decades.
.
Mine, and I believe a lot of people's objections to standardized testing instead comes from the confluence of these two things:

a. Does the test measure what it purports to measure? While they may at a first pass, a key issue is that the format for a standardized test often means they can be "gamed" to artificially raise the score. This has led many schools, such as those in our area, to devote a lot of time each school year to teaching test taking techniques geared toward the tests given in this state. Time that could and should instead be spent teaching subjects.

b. Use of test scores to develop/implement changes in education outside what they were meant to do. This is another that has happened in our schools. Primarily in the form of "teaching to the test." That is spending most of the school year teaching those subjects, and those sub areas, that are on the test and minimizing those subjects that aren't tested. For us this results in Math and English getting much more heavily taught than Science and History which aren't as much a focus of the test.
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Old 08-14-2022, 02:50 PM
 
Location: Oregon, formerly Texas
9,225 posts, read 6,024,858 times
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Standardized testing is not in itself bad. It's useful to have a standardized measure of what students know.

The problems come in when you tie funding to the aggregate scores. THEN the schools are perversely incentivized to just drill the tests instead of actually teach anything. As tnff said, they teach students how to hack the tests. They don't teach them actual subjects.
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Old 08-14-2022, 07:45 PM
 
4,820 posts, read 2,266,204 times
Reputation: 11061
Quote:
Originally Posted by phetaroi View Post
I agree. But schools should be held accountable for what they accomplish...or don't. Even as a former teacher and retired principal, this idea that we should just trust schools that they are doing a good job isn't the way it should work either. So the question is, how do you evaluate schools and personnel.
My daughter's first grade teacher was the worst. At the halfway point of the school year, I asked my daughter the time on a digital clock. She said she didn't know numbers over 10 - her teacher hadn't taught them to count 10 - 100 or how to count by 5's or 10's. I read books on what's covered in first grade and got to work fast. Then I got her out of the school.

A standard test would have shown the whole class was behind due to her teacher's incompetence.

OTHO, class averages may not show the whole picture. Kids are individuals with strengths and weakness. A couple of bright kids can move the class average up. A class with slower kids can move the average down. Then, of course, as others have posted, teachers begin to game the system.

Unfortunately, art/music are dropped to make more time for subject with testing.

It's a dilemma.
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