FairTest's newsblasts are designed to help keep activists and journalists up to date about the status of the testing resistance and reform movement while also providing resources and models for effective organizing. Please let us know the email addresses of any colleagues who would benefit from these weekly updates.
Many of this week's top stories involve the controversial Common Core tests, both the fallout from their initial administration in New York and support for the growing national movement seeking a moratorium on their use. Meanwhile, protests against high-stakes exams by students, parents, and educators continue to escalate as more evidence becomes available that test-based "accountability" is an ideologically driven fraud, which improves neither school quality nor equity.
Over the summer, there's been a sharp increase in investigative reports about the companies that make standardized exams, the fraudulent school grades derived from them, and the collateral damage from testing overkill. All of this will be valuable ammunition to escalate assessment reform campaigns when school resumes as soon as next week in some parts of the south and west.
How much more evidence do policy makers need before they recognize that test-and-punish policies have failed? Learning gains have stagnated, progress toward closing the "achievement gap" has stalled, and their constituents increasingly reject the strategy. Even some of their strongest newspaper editorial page allies -- including the New York Times and Los Angeles Times -- are saying that it is time to look at alternative approaches. Enough is enough!
Major National Survey Finds Parents Strongly Oppose Standardized Testing Misuse and Overuse
It's mid-summer, so news about about assessment reform must surely have slowed down . . . NOT!
Here's the latest collection of great stories and commentaries to use as ammunition both now and when school resumes in a few weeks. Sorry that it is so "fat," but the size reflects the great work so many of you are doing.
The Trouble with Testing Mania -- NYTimes Editorial Moves Away From Test-and-Punish Embrace
With schools out for the summer, this week's media coverage includes fewer stories about testing protests but more about reevaluating assessment policies. Believe it or not, public schools in several states open for a new year of classes in just a few weeks - - let another round of resistance to high-stakes testing begin!
Rhode Island Legislators Overwhelmingly Oppose Graduation Test Proposal