Educators hate mandated testing.
Hate. Hate. Hate it.
It’s like fingernails on a chalkboard (for those of you younger than 35… chalkboards were used to write on and deliver notes to students before your fancy whiteboards and SMARTBoards came along).
Yet, I think schools perform at a higher level because of testing (not a popular position, I know).
That being said, I disagree with many of the decisions by the people (politicians) who have put testing in place.
The truth is people perform better when they are evaluated.
I don’t like it. You don’t like it. Nobody likes it.
I’ve never met anyone who said "Yeah, it’s time for my evaluation. Sweet!"
I can’t say testing has made students smarter, but I think it’s made teachers and administrators more accountable.
I also think it’s a mortal lock that everyone involved, from politicians to testing companies, has benefited more than kids from all this "testing business".
Don’t kid yourself, it’s big business. Really big.
Those who demand more testing also seem to believe scores are a reflection of student intelligence. Higher Scores = Better Teachers and Smarter Students.
I don’t buy this.
As educators, we face challenges that can’t be tested.
I think the number one challenge for education and educators in this country is poverty.
My late father-in-law used to say he could drive through any community and tell you their test scores. He called it his "Garage Door Theory".
More garage doors equaled higher test scores.
Communites with large houses with three car garages did better than communities with smaller houses and fewer garages.
Maybe his theory was a bit simplistic. Or maybe he was more correct than most of us want to believe.