Wednesday, May 18, 2016

The First Rule of Test Club is We Don’t Talk About Test Club | gadflyonthewallblog

The First Rule of Test Club is We Don’t Talk About Test Club | gadflyonthewallblog:

The First Rule of Test Club is We Don’t Talk About Test Club

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How can you criticize standardized testing if you aren’t allowed to talk about the tests?
To show why these assessments are bad, you have to be able to mention specific questions on the exams.
But if you do that, you will be violating the test company’s copyright and thus be subject to legal action.
So there will be no discussion of your concerns, no defense of the questions in question. Instead you’ll be threatened to silence.
This is the Catch-22 for teachers, parents and children throughout the nation.
We know the federally mandated high stakes assessments public school children must take are poorly constructed, culturally and racially biased, and ultimately unfair. But if we speak up in public with any kind of specificity, we’re threatened with steep fines. And if we write about it on-line, those articles will be taken down, censored or otherwise disappeared.
This is what happened to Prof. Celia Oyler of Teachers College, Columbia University this week when she posted an anonymous classroom teacher’s critique of the 4th grade PARCC exam on her blog.
Since the article reproduced three live questions from the exam, Oyler received athreatening email from PARCC CEO Laura Slover.
Oyler acquiesced to the CEO’s demand that she remove the PARCC questions, but she did not – as Slover commanded – reveal the name of her source. Oyler is debating legal action of her own against the testing company.
Meanwhile, education bloggers across the country have engaged in civil disobedience by reprinting Oyler’s entire post along with the PARCC questions. Many of these articles have been taken down by Twitter, Facebook or other Internet enforcers.
It’s a sad day in America when free speech is treated so disdainfully.
These PARCC questions are considered private property, but in many important ways they are not. They were developed at public expense. They were funded by taxpayers The First Rule of Test Club is We Don’t Talk About Test Club | gadflyonthewallblog:

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