Test makers should not be driving instruction

In a post about the difficulty of New York’s Common Core assessments, Robert Pondiscio said:

Test makers have an obligation to signal to the field the kind of instructional choices they want teachers to make

via http://edexcellence.net/articles/new-york%E2%80%99s-common-core-tests-tough-questions-curious-choices

I’m going to disagree with Robert on this one. I’m fairly certain that test makers should NOT be the ones driving instruction…

5 Responses to “Test makers should not be driving instruction”

  1. Perhaps it would have been better and more accurate to say test makers DO drive instruction. So what exactly do we propose to do about that?

  2. I agree with Robert. In an era of high stakes testing, the issue is that the test makers are driving instruction when they are less qualified than classroom teachers. Test makers are experts in test theory, but not necessarily experts on education, learning theory, or the students we see daily. One standardized tests does not seem like a reliable or valid measure of student success. Rather, it is important for teachers to use objective data within the classroom to monitor students’ growth and development in fundamental skills in literacy, numeracy, and/or science. That seems to be a more legitimate way to signal the kind of instructional choices we want to make. Teaching to the test is a strategy that provides higher test scores but less able students – it is our moral obligation to choose what is best for our students critically and creatively over what test makers want to see in a standardized setting.

  3. What a huge conflict of interest. Corporate greed is running our schools. Education–the last frontier to be exploited?

    • @Laurie No, just the latest. Started with the Prison system (privatizing), then to the Military (outsourcing), then education, and they’re already starting the attack on law enforcement (Look for the “few bad apples” stories that are always the first round. Expect to see the Usual Suspects using Ferguson as a “call for change”)

  4. This is a matter of the Golden Rule. S/he who has the gold makes the rules.

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