We need to restore a proper balance to public education. The growing fixation on high-stakes testing is damaging our efforts to improve schools. While appropriate assessments are an integral part of a high-quality education system, an accountability system obsessed with measuring, which punishes teachers and schools, comes at a huge cost. It's time to make sure that teaching and learning—not testing—drive classroom instruction so that we can give all children the rich, meaningful public education they deserve.
Testimonial from English Teacher Bonnee Breese
Test grades only take a snapshot of those hours, on those particular days in a child's life. But with the community of learners that I serve, at any moment of their days, their whole lives can be turned upside down.
Reflections on Testing–Helen Gym, Parent, Philadelphia
My most immediate concern about high-stakes testing is the way it has dumbed down the curriculum, and that has been the most painful, difficult thing for me to deal with. I feel like there is such a drive for test-prep.