Daily Archives: March 13, 2011

Nothing’s Changed

How much has been spent on testing that is supposedly making our schools stronger?
I don’t know the answer to that question. I do know SAT averages haven’t changed all that much since I was in high school in 1987. I know when I went to college I could write any type of paper I was asked to write. I could read anything I was asked to read, and I could read it critically. I understood when my professors gave me work due by a certain date, that the date was non-negotiable.
Why do we as a society continue to buy in to the idea that testing takes the place of education?
If a Fortune 500 CEO or political pundit walked into a heart surgery, pushed the cardiologist aside and said he had everything under control, we’d call the man crazy. But both can say they’ve got the answers to education issues, and we believe them even if they’ve never spent time in the classroom. Even if they went to private schools from birth and the only college experience they have is the kind found at the Ivy’s.
I’m all for a set of standards and examining data and collaborating for best practices. I believe in Whatever it Takes. I think vertical and horizontal alignment is essential.
But testing hasn’t made a dent in quality education since we embraced it. It’s broken education and left the state broke. Perhaps it’s time we find more than one answer.