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A running theme that the only thing that matters is test scores

according to the American Psychological Association, a study of Texas middle school students found that healthy lungs and hearts could “predict” better scores on reading and math tests. Here’s another — from the UK but in the same vein — touting the conclusion that “daily exercise significantly improves pupils test scores.” And another finding that...

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No one is listening to the students

Diane Ravitch says: [The] data-driven focus [of Houston Independent School District’s Apollo Program] contains the seed of its own destruction. Talking about tests all the time, doing test prep all the time, making kids take tests that they are not relevant to them and that they are not prepared for. . . . I was...

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Want students to look worse? Change the cut scores.

In a must-read article explaining the politics behind cut scores on state-level tests, principal Carol Burris notes: In 2011, the College Board created a College Readiness index.   It was a combined index of 1550, which only 43 percent of all SAT test takers achieved. You can find it here. Now add up New York’s chosen...

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Education reformers want double standards for THEIR schools

Education reformers want double standards for THEIR schools

In what is likely to be my favorite post of the week (and, yes, it’s Monday!), Shaun Johnson says: in case you’re confused, let me summarize Jay P. Greene’s innovative arguments: Standardized test results – and consequences driven almost exclusively by them – are wonderful ways to hold public schools accountable, up to and including...

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Picking right answers from a set of prescribed alternatives that trivialize complexity and ambiguity

Leon Botstein says: The essential mechanism of the SAT, the multiple choice test question, is a bizarre relic of long outdated twentieth century social scientific assumptions and strategies. As every adult recognizes, knowing something or how to do something in real life is never defined by being able to choose a “right” answer from a...

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The REAL international story of American education

Linda Darling-Hammond said: Federal policy under No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and the Department of Education’s ‘flexibility’ waivers has sought to address [the problem of international competitiveness] by beefing up testing policies — requiring more tests and upping the consequences for poor results: including denying diplomas to students, firing teachers, and closing schools. Unfortunately, this...

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What’s good about standardized tests?

What’s good about standardized tests?

Upcoming travel and events December 3-5 – International School of Amsterdam, The Netherlands February 3 – Virginia Is for Learners Innovation Network, TBD, VA February 25-26 – Missouri Educational Technology Leaders CTO Clinic, TBD, MO March 10-13 – Central & Eastern European Schools Association (CEESA) Annual Conference, Budapest, Hungary June 8-9 – Roanoke County Public...

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The magical power of PARCC

The magical power of PARCC

Peter Greene said: [When advocates] come to explain how crucial PARCC testing is for your child’s future, you might try asking some questions: Exactly what is the correspondence between PARCC results and college readiness? Given the precise data, can you tell me what score my eight year old needs to get on the test to...

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