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Mon Sep 8, 2014, 03:05 PM

Teacher tells of throwing students to the "testing wolves."

I crossposted in GD, so give a rec there if you can.

Teacher: No longer can I throw my students to the ‘testing wolves’

Veteran teacher Dawn Neely-Randall and Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown look at a post Neely-Randall wrote for The Answer Sheet about the reform movement. (Photo by Tom Traut)

Last spring, you wouldn’t find the fifth-graders in my Language Arts class reading as many rich, engaging pieces of literature as they had in the past or huddled over the same number of authentic projects as before. Why? Because I had to stop teaching to give them a Common Core Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) online sample test that would prepare them for the upcoming PARCC pilot pre-test which would then prepare them for the PARCC pilot post test – all while taking the official Ohio Achievement Tests. This amounted to three tests, each 2 ½ hours, in a single week, the scores of which would determine the academic track students would be placed on in middle school the following year.

In addition to all of that, I had to stop their test prep lessons (also a load of fun) to take each class three floors down to our computer lab so they could take the Standardized Testing and Reporting (“STAR”) tests so graphs and charts could be made of their Student Growth Percentile (SGP) which would then provide quantitative evidence to suggest how these 10-year-olds would do on the “real” tests and also surmise the teacher’s (my) affect on their learning.

Tests, tests, and more freakin’ tests.

Parents upset as well.

One parent sent me her district’s calendar showing that students would complete 21 mandated (K-3) assessments before a child would even finish third grade. When I asked an Ohio Department of Education employee about this, she insisted there were not that many tests. When I read them to her one by one from the district’s calendar, she defended her position by saying that some of them were not from her department, but from another one. “But it’s the SAME kid!!!” I told her.

Indeed, it sure seems that school just isn’t for children anymore.

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Reply Teacher tells of throwing students to the "testing wolves." (Original post)
madfloridian Sep 2014 OP
Louisiana1976 Sep 2014 #1
LWolf Sep 2014 #3
rhett o rick Sep 2014 #2

Response to madfloridian (Original post)

Mon Sep 8, 2014, 03:32 PM

1. Common Core sucks. It's a cookie-cutter approach to learning that does not take the

individuality of the students or the teachers into account.

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Response to Louisiana1976 (Reply #1)

Sun Sep 21, 2014, 02:01 PM

3. No.

The Common Core is just a set of standards, and it's not a cookie-cutter approach to learning any more than any set of standards.

It's not necessarily the standards...any standards, although I personally would prefer that standards be few and broad, rather than huge documents many pages long breaking down knowledge and skills into isolated portions for measurement.

It's the misuse and abuse of standards that is abusive to students, to teachers, and to public education.

It's the misuse of those standards to mandate top-down, authoritarian standardization of curriculum and instruction, and the use of high-stakes tests based on those standards to further abuse the system.

The CCSS are not bad in themselves. It's the use of them as a weapon against public education, against teachers, and against students that "sucks."

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Response to madfloridian (Original post)

Mon Sep 8, 2014, 07:00 PM

2. k&r. Thanks for posting. nm


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