Beyond Despair! New York State ELA Tests Are Failing Our Kids
The youngest children ensnared in New York State’s testing regime are eight. To understand how it’s not their fault that a huge percentage of them cannot comprehend the exams they’re sitting for — and shouldn’t be expected to — read this post.
Failing the Test
Did you hold your child out of New York State’s testing protocol? You’re not alone. Over 20 percent of the test population did so between 2013 and 2015. And our research indicates why you’re probably smart to have done so, and why until New York State’s Department of Education becomes more transparent about how and why they ‘ve rewarded testing contractors with tens of millions of dollars to force-feed your kid a flawed exam, more and more parents should refuse to let their kids prop up a broken system.
Perhaps no facet of the state’s failed testing regime should cause more scrutiny than the fact that the achievement gap between whites and Black and Hispanic students has roughly doubled under the past half-decade of mandated testing. Let’s make something clear: No matter what, tests that fail to narrow the achievement gap are already suspect. Tests that actually make it worse point to a total lack of conscience on the part of the State Department of Education, and to a dire need for reform.
If you’re wondering why kids have such a difficult time with these state-mandated tests, read some of the passages yourself and see if they make any sense to you — let alone to an eight-year-old child. One of the examples here stumped nearly 25 percent of all test takers, and you need to see it with your own eyes to understand why these examinations are clearly age inappropriate.
If you’re wondering why and how student assessment became an industry, read this. You’ll learn not only that testing is inevitable, but apparently testing without accountability to the veracity and quality of the product doesn’t matter to state officials. Your child — and your tax dollars — hang in the balance of a deeply flawed testing system in New York State.