Thursday, May 18, 2017

John Thompson: OKCPS must choose path in wake of new testing rules - NonDoc

OKCPS must choose path in wake of new testing rules - NonDoc:

OKCPS must choose path in wake of new testing rules

new testing rules




 The headline of Ben Felder’s front-page story in the May 5 edition of The Oklahoman proclaimed wonderful news: State Re-Examines Testing.

Felder reviewed examples of outrages unleashed by test-driven accountability. He described a Duncan teacher fighting back tears as she read the notes left by some of her algebra students. One wrote, “I hate testing so much,” while another scribbled, “help.”
Yes! A bipartisan grassroots coalition of students, parents and educators, combined with State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister’s leadership, beat back the testing frenzy of the last decade and a half.
My question is: Will the Oklahoma City Public School System re-examine its bubble-in instruction and change course?

Teach-to-the-test malpractice takes over

Through most of my career, OKCPS high schools were at least semi-successful in resisting “drill and kill” basic skills instruction. By the end of my full-time teaching in 2010, however, my students who came from the poorest elementary and middle schools complained that they had been completely robbed of an education. Nonstop worksheet-driven test prep drove the joy of learning out of school.
It wasn’t until the launch of end-of-instruction graduation exams and the threat of value-added teacher evaluations (when individual students and adults could be punished for low test scores) that teach-to-the-test malpractice took over.
I taught part-time during those maddening years. We could mourn with our students about the damage that was being done to them, but we also had to subordinate our OKCPS must choose path in wake of new testing rules - NonDoc:

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