Thursday, April 7, 2016

Undergoing the pressure of standardized tests

As the Spring approaches, Springfield High School (SHS) students begin their journey into the realm of standardized tests, such as the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) and the American College Test (ACT).

www.themessage.news    

11 comments :

  1. chuck gregory4/7/16, 3:52 PM

    With all the information available about the corrosive influence of standardized tests, we ought to set our own course on developing a meaningful way of measuring student achievement. It needs to be based on one principle, which I heard from a very good teacher: "A good teacher brings out in students that which they didn't know they had in them." Discuss.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Measuring your knowledge and your capabilities against others is how the world used to work. Now the teachers and students complain because they can't pass simple tests that prove both teachers and students are dumber than bricks. The attitude that everyone gets a trophy and no one can be measured is pure self-serving liberal bunk to prevent acknowledging they have failed. Of course all the while the teachers complain about poor benefits and wages while refusing to be measured for competency.

      Delete
    2. chuck gregory4/7/16, 8:39 PM

      5:11, read the reports. The standardized testing system does horrible things, such as 1) creating a for-profit testing industry which is under no regulations as far as the quality of the tests they offer. You, personally, can write a question for use in the language comprehension section and get paid $150 if they accept it. There are a number of things wrong with this, except the part for you getting paid to work. 2) Emphasis on the tests means that schools and teachers get punished when all the students fail to be above average, so that means EVERYBODY in the school system is under pressure to A) teach to the test and B) fudge the scoring (you haven't read about what happened in Atlanta). 3) State and federal reliance on the tests (which affect governmental funding means many, many tests are needed, which means anywhere from two to four weeks of schooling are sacrificed for testing. 4) The burden laid upon teachers is laid upon parents, who lay it on their kids. Both parents and kids are extremely disturbed by being subjected to the process. 5) Since children are of different temperaments and the tests are standardized, the tests CANNOT accurately indicate how well any child is doing overall-- actually, they only measure math and language comprehension-- so they fail in what they were meant to do. 6) Since they fail in what they were meant to do, schools and students are unfairly punished.

      We need a far better way of measuring our kids' knowledge and capabilities-- and not against, but with, others-- to keep our world working. At present, we are in a race to the bottom in Springfield, but we can do something about it. I recommend you see "Where to Invade Next." playing in town right now.

      Delete
    3. Just a matter of time before SHS offers courses in how to maximize your living on the dole benefits. No prerequisite for being able to read, write or do math and everyone gets an "A". Extra-credit given if you come to class high.

      Delete
  2. Chuck, please enlighten us what better way to measure a student's potential for success in preparing themselves for a career in science, medicine, and engineering? As a retired social service worker with no academic skill sets do you have even the slightest idea of the demands medical school and professional engineering entails? Would you have your physician avoid medical boards and your trial attorney avoid the bar both because it "cannot accurately indicate" their trade competency?

    Student testing may not be a percent measure, but it seems to be the most reliable gauge available. Unfortunately, we never hold unionized teachers accountable in the failure analysis.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Machinist: This Professional Engineer was not judged on standardized tests (save the SAT on which my scores were abysmal given my overall grades and capabilities...first multiple choice test I did reasonably on was my calculus AP, and that's because my teacher taught me how to relax and work the test). I graduated with high honors from college and have a very rewarding engineering career. If I had been judged on testing alone, I would probably not be where I am today.

      Back in my generation, the schools used basic competencies. These were short tests on various skills...arithmetic, writing, reading bus schedules, writing checks, participating in a job interview. Real life skills. Sadly, many students today, despite testing, could not pass those skills. Too much attention on tests and pushing new skills so everyone is introduced to algebra concepts at a young age (as an example) is not helping the vast majority of our students. Many of the math problems my kids had for homework were word problems which as a kid I, again successful engineer, struggled with in school. Now my career is huge word problems all day every day. But you have to grow into these things. You need basic skills first, and a progression of learning to get to the point where you can achieve at a professional level. We need more teaching and learning, and less academic postulating in our schools. It's a lets try this...oops it didn't work...lets try this mentality and unfortunately many generations of students are being left behind by the powers that be (way above our local level) trying to figure all this out. Back to basics is what I say and then the kids would do a whole lot better in the end (and probably on the tests as well).

      Delete
  3. I took the test back in the last century (1974) and went on the earn an Engineering degree and then on to work in the Engineering field. I do not see any big deal about these test(s). Unless, What have they done to make these tests different from what I took back then? Someone mess with it? Someone have a better idea? I am glad I went to school back in the last century !!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. James Wormstead4/8/16, 12:01 PM

    SAT and ACT are not the standardized tests which have been rendering havoc with the public education system. The standardization introduced via NCLB is the type which has caused problems. The SAT and ACT are fairly legitimate tests for the college bound. Not sure it makes sense to use these for those aimed at the trades. The over-emphasis on advanced mathematics is causing undue discouragement of our high school students, and resulting in the requirement of mastering skills that are unlikely for the students to use in the future. Some kids just need basic math and English which will be used by them throughout their life. We need to offer the more advanced stuff, but not require it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes James, continue the dumbing down of America. Its working. Look around you for the results. Make it as simple and easy as possible so everyone can graduate without any new knowledge acquired or work required during their school daze.

      Delete
  5. The bottom line is India had more High Honor graduating students then the USA had total number of students enrolled in schools. The educational standards are higher in India then they are in the US as well. We will be over come in the world industry because there is no more innovation or students to support the demand required to maintain a lead position world industry.

    As we sit here is discuss how to change testing styles and how to improve our artsy fartsy feel good programs, other countries have clear goals to surpass the US in education and industry. And it will happen in our lifetime.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Bob Lombard4/9/16, 12:05 PM

    James Wormstead, you are 'right on'... if basic logic training is also part of the curriculum. Plane geometry can help there, if the teacher leans on its logic, and not so much formula memorization. A squared plus B squared equals C squared is of limited utility.

    ReplyDelete


Please keep your comments polite and on-topic.

R E C E N T . . . C O M M E N T S

Springfield Vermont News is an ongoing zero-income volunteer hyperlocal news gathering project. No paid advertising is accepted on this site but any Springfield business willing to place a link to this news blog on their site will be considered for a free ad here. Businesses, organizations and individuals may submit write-ups and photos about any positive happenings here in Springfield that they are associated with and would be deemed newsworthy. Email the Editor at ed44vt@gmail.com.

Privacy statement: This blog does not share personal information with third parties nor do we store any information about your visit to this blog other than to analyze and optimize your content and reading experience through the use of cookies. You can turn off the use of cookies at anytime by changing your specific browser settings. We are not responsible for republished content from this blog on other blogs or websites without our permission. This privacy policy is subject to change without notice and was last updated on January 1, 2017. If you have any questions feel free to contact Springfield Vermont News directly here: ed44vt@gmail.com .

Pageviews past week


Sign by Danasoft - For Backgrounds and Layouts