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View Diary: A 5th grader says No to NCLB. (210 comments)

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  •  The machine-scored tests aren't any better (6+ / 0-)

    at determining anything other than which kids can take tests well.

    I used to work in the educational publishing business, so I know how the tests are constructed.

    Psychometricians decide what the point score on specific test forms will be, and those constructing the tests choose random questions on the subject from a test question bank or database -- prepared by people with varying skill levels -- to add up to that point total.

    So one test form might have three really hard questions and 17 easy ones, and one other test form might have 20 mid-level difficulty questions. If your kid is lucky enough to get the form with the 17 easy questions, he or she might get a substantially higher score than the kid who got the form with the mid-level questions. It's all a crap shoot, over and above the variables of kids coming to school on testing day hungry or tired or emotionally unprepared.

    The very idea that some people want to use this misguided system to control teacher pay and retention is just appalling.

    Get rid of this system now! It only serves to line the pockets of the rich and powerful, and to keep your children locked into little check boxes to determine whether or not they succeed at life. It's positively Orwellian!

    "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

    by Brooke In Seattle on Tue Mar 08, 2011 at 09:22:29 AM PST

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