Letter: What I Hear About Standardized Testing

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Parents: I don’t let my kids stress about these tests. I just tell them “don’t worry because the tests don’t matter to you.”

Me: “But it does matter! It matters because the teachers wasted two-thirds of the year to test prep rather than teach your child. It matters because all those teachers need your child to take it seriously because their livelihoods are on the line. It matters because once your school fails, it will be taken over by some state-private entity and you will have no say in what is being taught in your school. It matters because you will have no local control of your school as we once did. It matters because your school taxes will be raised to pay for the takeover, to pay for more testing equipment, to pay for outside evaluators and not to pay for more teachers. It matters because your child will not learn about music, art and science because they need time to test prep. It matters because your child will only read out of necessity or force and not for the sheer enjoyment of it. It matters because there are companies out there making millions to fail your child. It matters because the elected officials and companies are pushing it through legislation without any type of public review. Why? Because everything about that tests matters. So please refuse the tests because it matters.

By allowing your children to take the Common Core Standardized tests, you are saying, that you are OK with the following facts.

• 70 percent of mainstream children failed the Math and ELA exams last year.
• 90 percent of special needs children failed the Math and ELA tests last year.
• Our children are being tested 2 to 4 levels above their capability.
• Record number of children are vomiting, crying, and pulling their hair out during these exams.
• Children sit longer for state tests, than an adult does who is entering law or medical school.

To those parents who say, “Well I like to see how my kids are doing.” The teacher who sees them 180 days a year is able to tell you how they are doing. A test given six days out of the year with developmentally inappropriate material is not a good measure of what your child has learned.

The results from this test aren’t received until fall of the following year, when your child is no longer in the class. The way it’s broken down and the secrecy of the test content doesn’t allow for information to be used in a constructive way in the classroom.

And finally no, your school will not lose funding for not taking the tests. This is another scare tactic used by school officials.

Contrary to what you may hear at a board of education meetings, the tests and Common Core are all tied in together. They are not separate entities. Refuse the tests in record numbers, and the curriculum disappears. Don’t forget the whole curriculum is based on the tests. They are connected.

Please join the Facebook group “Choose to Refuse Common Core.”

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