Why Companies Like Achieve Inc Now Want You To Opt Out Of State Assessments
A blog called NYC Public School Parents published the results of a survey about testing and opt out a couple of days ago. The findings were a bit bizarre in my opinion. The fact that it came from Achieve Inc. is very troubling. For the past couple years, maybe longer, parents have been opting their children out of the state assessment. That’s a good thing. But the fact that Achieve Inc. would publish findings that show parents are presumably getting sick of testing and more suburban moms know about opt out is a bit of a farce in my opinion. At this point, Achieve wants you to opt out. They want you to complain about too much testing. They want you, the parents of America, to make such a loud noise that the feds and the states will be forced to change testing environments. Yes, one of the biggest corporate education reform companies in America is finally in agreement with what we’ve been saying all along! Finally! But guess what… this was the plan all along.
If you are royally confused, follow me. Achieve Inc. helped to set up the Common Core, way back when. There are some who say they took the work of the Common Core steering committees, ditched it, and came up with their own set of standards. You know how so many people say “Common Core sucks” and “It’s federal intrustion” and all that stuff? They are right. I believe it was intentionally designed to be messed up. And the tests based off it, like the Smarter Balanced Assessment and PARCC? They were designed to be bad tests. No one will say this officially. But they wanted enough parents to opt out to make some noise. Not a full-blown, everyone opts out noise. But enough to draw attention to the subject of assessments. And they responded. Florida, Delaware, and many other states conducted Assessment Inventories. In Delaware, ours was initiated by, who else, Achieve Inc. These inventories served a double purpose. It kept the subject of “too many assessments” in the minds of those who followed this type of thing. It also helped to stop some states from moving forward with opt out legislation. I’ve seen a Delaware Department of Education email stating our Senate Joint Resolution #2 was a solution against opt out.
You’re still confused. I understand. It’s hard to explain this in any way that makes sense. The Common Core-High Stakes Testing era of corporate education reform is coming to an end. Very soon. But that was just a phase. It allowed the states to get all their data systems in place. It allowed career & technical education initiatives to get their start. But the biggest thing Common Core and the state assessments did was open the door to something else. We are now entering the next phase and the groundwork was laid a long time ago.
Welcome to the Competency-Based Education era! Instead of your child advancing through grade levels, they will now advance once they master the material. Don’t get me wrong. The state assessments will still be there. But parents most likely won’t even know when their child is taking it. Because it won’t be the same test. It won’t be students cooped up taking the same test over a period of weeks in the Spring. It will be all year. The same tests, that we have loved to hate, they will still be here. They may tweak them up a bit, but they aren’t going anywhere. They laid the trap, and we all fell in it.
How is this even possible? Through modern technology. Through personalized learning. Don’t be fooled by the term personalized learning. There are actually two kinds. The concept has been around for decades. More one-on-one instruction from teachers, Why Companies Like Achieve Inc Now Want You To Opt Out Of State Assessments – Exceptional Delaware: