Ten of the best school-reform ideas from readers

2. Less testing, more creativity and inspiration.

“Let teachers teach. Education is too involved in testing, as if test scores are the goal of education,” wrote David Wickemeyer, student magazine advisor and technology volunteer at Union Middle School in San Jose, Calif. “Testing cannot score creativity, insight, [or] new ways of looking at things—these are the skills more important in the real word.”

He continued: “Employers don’t care if you scored a 689 on SAT Math Level II. They want to know if you can solve problems, see a project though, come up with new ideas, even work well with others (not a socialist idea alone). If I was Harry Potter, with my magic wand, I would free all teachers from the bonds of standardized testing (which isn’t standardized at all) and let them freely teach.”

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