Seattle is seeing its fair share of controversy regarding the required MAPS testing in its schools. Teachers are boycotting the test, and the Superintendent has issued a warning. Now, parents are joining the teachers in their stance against a test the teachers feel provides too little useful information and which they feel has too high of an error margin.
One parent has written an editorial about her support for the test as did the President of the test maker. A teacher who has led a number of education-based political actions also composed an editorial explaining the teachers’ position rationale.
Is this the first salvo fired by teachers in an effort to curb the heavy reliance on testing, or is this an ephemeral action quick to disappear?
I know my school district is about to require three reading tests for high school English students during the school year along with two writing exams. This will eliminate at least a week of teaching and require hours of teacher time to assess. Is it worth it? Probably not. These summative assessments simply tell teachers what they already know from the formative assessments used in the classroom; however, the data isn’t really for the teachers. It’s for the district to have “authentic” data from state test-like exams indicating student readiness for the actual state test.
Are you seeing any anti-testing stands in your area?