Why Standardized Testing Undermines Teaching By Diane Ravitch

1706 Words 7 Pages
Register to read the introduction… She states that standardized testing resulted from the No child left behind bill enacted by congress that aimed at ensuring that all children in America would attain free elementary education. Although the author was at the forefront of advocating for this system, she is now opposed to it. The testing system according to the author has been used as a means to close down schools and judge both performance of students and teachers without taking into account other factors. Ravitch states that this system requires that schools be given yearly-standardized exams to monitor the progress of the students. These tests are meant to show if students meet the adequate yearly progress goals. If schools fail to meet these requirements for five consecutive years it is then restructured or shut down. The author faults this move as it is seen as recycling the problem without necessarily addressing the real issues. She states that after the schools shut down, the teachers often end up employed in other school hence continuing the cycle. In the end, the students suffer and performance is …show more content…
James Popham notes that educators today are facing intense pressure to show their effectiveness. This is because their outcome is now measured by the outcomes of their standardized tests. When a school scores highly on the standardized test, it is seen that the staff are working efficiently. If the results are low then the school’s staffs are not effective. This system, the author says, is the wrong yardstick to use to measure the quality of education (Popham n.p.). The author explains how the two kinds of standardized tests, the aptitude tests and achievement tests. The aptitude tests attempt to predict how well a student will perform in the following education level while the achievement tests evaluate the effectiveness of a school. Popham states that five tests that are commonly used in the United States are namely: California Achievement tests, Comprehensive Tests of Basic skills, Metropolitan Achievement tests and Stanford achievement

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