Standardized tests are pests—here’s why

Key points:

  • Standardized tests aren’t inclusive and often lead to unnecessary stress
  • Educators should shift focus from standardized tests to ensuring students become independent learners
  • See related article: What’s the state of K-12 assessment?
  • For more news on assessments, see eSN’s Innovative Teaching page

Standardized testing has long been a contentious topic in the field of education. While the primary goal of standardized testing is to measure student achievement and set benchmarks for educational standards, it carries unintended consequences. This article delves into the multifaceted impact of state tests on various aspects of education.

Standardized reading tests…Read More

3 key considerations for the future of assessments

The cancellation of summative assessments in the spring of 2020, coupled with the variability of the spring 2021 testing season, has significantly impacted the K–12 assessment landscape.

Though students continue to feel pressure around high-stakes tests, their perceived value has decreased dramatically, according to a recent study that surveyed K-12 educators and parents in the United States. In terms of measuring student success, respondents perceive standardized test scores as the least important among 14 factors, at only 29 percent.

When it comes to formative assessment or assessment for learning, however, things look different. To check students’ understanding, 76 percent of educators delivered formative assessments during remote learning. Though formative assessments have proven instrumental in addressing learning gaps related to school closures, the need for accountability testing has not gone away.…Read More

Redefining what it means to be ‘college-ready’

Societal pressures on high school seniors seemingly grow by the year. These days, a student’s level of college and workforce readiness is said to be dependent on their college admission test scores, completing the most rigorous high school classes possible, and obtaining AP credit. But research shows that these are not the sole indicators.

ACT recently released a report that claims only 26 percent of 2018 high school graduates were ready for the workforce, but I believe readiness is dictated by so much more than a standardized test score.

Related content: 4 keys to supporting college and career readiness…Read More

Dying student still has to prove he can’t take a standardized test

Eleven-year-old Ethan Rediske has been in hospice care for the past month and is likely nearing the last days of his life, the Huffington Post reports. Yet, it appears Florida school officials aren’t convinced he should be able to opt out of an upcoming standardized test. Florida requires all students in the state to take a version of Florida’s Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT). While a recent law allows some special education students facing exceptional circumstances to be exempt from these tests, getting approval isn’t easy…

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