State legislation that would make it illegal to punish students who opt out of standardized testing, their teachers or the schools where they have been allowed to opt out is a good first step, but more needs to be done.

Standardized testing is overused today and often for improper purposes. Standard tests are no longer limited as a tool used to measure student proficiency, they are used to assess teaching skills and provide a level of accountability for schools and school districts. 

State Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman, a former educator and author of House Bill 2985, said state law permits parents to decide whether their children will take part in standardized tests. Parents who make that choice, he said, are met with discouragement from teachers and school administrators more concerned about the loss of money tied to testing and participation rates.

Rosencrants said his intent is not to eliminate standardized tests. His goal is to "put tests back in the hands of the people that are on the front lines," and eliminate the use of tests for accountability, "the worst idea that anybody has ever come up with."

The accountability components of standardized testing have been shown to disproportionately harm students of color and other marginalized populations. That aspect alone highlights the need to rethink — if not scale back — the use of standardized tests in public schools. 

Standardized testing is so prevalent in Oklahoma classrooms that critical learning skills have taken a backseat to passing those tests. That is a losing proposition not only for public school students but for the future, which will be doomed if those who follow know only how to deal with something they can reasonably foresee.

That's the folly of standardized testing.

React to this story:

0
0
0
0
0

Trending Video

Recommended for you