December 11, 2014

Those of you who regularly read this blog are well aware of the many posts I’ve written opposing the “testing culture” that has invaded our schools.

I’ve included quotes and referenced articles that have, generally, exposed a single aspect of this issue —- be it from the students’ side, the parents’ side, and/or the teachers’ side.

However, with the publication this week in THE AMERICAN SCHOLAR we finally have a more comprehensive analysis: “School Reform Fails the Test: How can our schools get better when we’ve made our teachers the problem and not the solution?” written by Mike Rose, a research professor at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA and author of 12 books.

This is a lengthy piece that covers almost all the bases. It will be a wise investment if you can find the time to read it.

With that aim in mind, I will include only a single quote that appears near the end of the article:

“What if reform had begun with the assumption that at least some of the answers for improvement were in the public schools themselves, that significant unrealized capacity exists in the teaching force, that even poorly performing schools employ teachers who work to the point of exhaustion to benefit their students? Imagine, then, what could happen if the astronomical amount of money and human resources that went into the past decade’s vast machinery of high-stakes testing-—from test development to the logistics of testing at each school site—if all that money had gone into a high-quality, widely distributed program of professional development.”

I hope you will read Mr. Rose’s piece and examine for yourself his comprehensive solutions. More on Monday – – –

– Bill Walton, co-Founder, ITC Learning
(Mondays & Wednesdays)