View Full Version : What do you think of standardized testing? Useful, harmful,useless or what else?

05-01-16, 10:15 AM
Mods, if you dont mind leaving this here. I feel like if it were moved to school or somewhere like that, it would get lost and have less traffic because of having to dig for it, but its up to you.

I hate standardized tests. I think they are useless, inaccurate, not a good representation of a students knowledge or abilities, and biased towards anyone with a disability.

Around here we have had PARCC testing drama. Its a new test designed by a suspiciously popular company that works with several states and its supposed to address the needs and abilities of the majority of students. What a joke. Last year when the controversy was new, many parents tried to take answer sample questions. Even teachers were getting them wrong!

Teacher friends of mine, say that they are forced to make part of their curriculum geared towards the tests, how to take it and what the test is looking to measure.
How does teaching my child a specific way to infer info from this one test allow her to bring up her grade in biology? They are rushing through the semester to allow enough time to prep for the test. My daughter has taken the math sections this year and last year the LA part.
I opted her out for this coming week because its too much for her. And never mind the amount of pressure my 7th grader feels.

Last year she was in a mental hospital for suicide stuff and depression but I can tell you in the weeks leading up to that she had some major issues wanting to go to school on those testing days. She keeps asking what her scores were because thats what the teachers talked about. I wont tell her I got them. According to them (and I can barely understand how they score them) She did awful. This, about a girl with IQ stuff in the superior range and making honor roll!

For me it was the SAT's. How sick I was of hearing "well you get an automatic 400 for signing your name" Well imagine how I felt when I got a 675! And imagine how I felt when my parents paid for a fancy prep class and I only ended up with a 875!
Yet, I got an English degree and got semi-decent grades and have a pretty good grasp of writing.
I just dont get what they are useful for, and how they could possibly account for adhd kids.

And both my girls had accomodations. One had an IEP, the other has a 504. It doesnt matter.

Anyhow, thoughts?

05-01-16, 10:28 AM
I feel it greatly reduces chances of making learning meaningful by actually enriching lives with helpful knowledge, rather, it aggressively enforces uniformed blanket responses and creates high anxiety, a huge loss of self-worth, or a false sense of wisdom in many.

05-01-16, 10:29 AM
I dunno...I feel ambivalent about them.

When I was a child, and I was being (psychologically) trained and caged like an animal,
one of my best circus tricks was getting extraordinarily good scores on standardized tests.

This seemed to please my keepers, and inasmuch as this meant a period of detente where
I could kinda relax for a breath, I was motivated to get good scores on the tests.

And however my brain is wired, it meant that most of the time it was easy.

They measure something, but Iím not sure what.

Teaching to a test seems a surefire way to mediocrity.


05-01-16, 11:29 AM
or a false sense of wisdom in many.

Omgs it. I couldnt quite figure out what it meant when you did well other than good college choices. But so many people use these numbers to brag about their intelligence. Throwing out IQ scores to me,is no different than HS seniors bragging abour getting a 1600 on the SAT and having their pick of IVY league schools. And with regards to high IQ? I am not saying if you have one that its something secret or bad but I just get so....ruffled when posts start out like:

"Hi, I have had adhd since childhood and I was in the gifted and talented program because Im twice exceptional and my iq is 140."
Its not that these are not valid scores, I just dont see the need to use it as a way to introduce yourself or allow others to get to know you.
Ah hell Im making no sense.
Because here's the thing:
Aeon did well on tests, school and has a very high IQ. I only know that because its come up in other discussions. I have never heard him whip that out to describe himself or relate to anyone elses school career.

05-01-16, 11:30 AM
I <3 aeon.

05-01-16, 11:53 AM
Tests at school are a waste of time. There's basically too many tests which stress the kids out even more than one test at the end of their last year would.

05-01-16, 11:57 AM
Thank you, sarahsweets. ;) Right back at yaí.

Iím not worth any more (or less) as a friend because of my scores, so why talk about them?

Back when I was a child, someone talked about them, and it meant losing a friend.
That left an impression on me to be sure, and a hurtful one at that.

Itís not as big a deal now as it once was, but a part of me used to feel very ashamed
of my brain because it made me different, and it gave me the sense I did not belong.

So thatís also why my numbers are my secret...because a part of me feels unsure
about them. Iím afraid if people knew, they wouldnít like me.

I donít need another reason on top of all the other ones I am worried about, ADHD
and otherwise, so mums the word.


Little Nut
05-01-16, 12:42 PM
Lemme preface that I have no children in school, and my exposure to these tests come from casual discussions with teacher friends and reading the news.

I've always felt that these type of tests are someone's poor substitute to properly manage the education process. For me the manager's of the education process reside in the individual school or within the school district Administration. They are responsible for knowing how well the children are being educated and the where/why of any strengths/shortcomings. I believe in general that benchmarking is a key feedback tool for improving a "groups" performance. The amount of resources expended in the schools to implement these tests far exceeds any simple benchmarking process. With resources being in such short supply in many school districts, the only explanation I can come up with to waste all of these resources is that the local managers of the education process are not trusted to meet their responsibilities. OTOH if this is the case it would be better to just find people that you do trust or give the current managers the additional authority needed to meet their responsibilities.

Another demonstration of "I know nothing and I can prove it!"