Monday, July 24, 2006
This has been bugging me for some time. It is about testing, NCLB, students, and teachers. It is about the basic assumptions behind testing and raising the bar of achievement.
Background point 1: states are mandated to test, and then increase test scores.
Background point 2: there is no funding for any of this to happen - for testing or for increasing achievement.
Assumption point 1: teachers are not teaching as hard as they should be.
Assumption point 2: students are not trying as hard as they should.
Assumption point 3: in order to make test scores go up, teachers and students just need to try harder.
This IS the plan. For those of us who leave a portion of our souls in the classroom every day, this is an incredible, demoralizing insult. For our kids who give it their all every day, this cuts the legs out from under their motivation.
If there were new instructional techniques being promoted, if there were new training being provided, if there were assistance from somebody for students and their families - and if there were any money to pay for ANY of this, then my Assumption points above would not hold water.
However, there is absolutely no plan for how to increase academic achievement. Wait, I take that back. Here is the plan: raise the bar! If you do that, achievement will go up!
How? Well, there is no plan for how. Just try harder, I guess.
(my personal core temperature just went up five degrees, not helping much with the need for cooling, but I feel better having pointed out the obvious)
at 1:56 PM