Saturday, January 2, 2016

A modest proposal

Sent to the New York Times, Dec. 31, 2015

Nobody wants to "get rid of the testing requirement" ("The Counterfeit High School Diploma," December 31). We all agree that assessment is necessary.  The problem is that testing in schools today is excessive and often inappropriate. 

We don't need to test every student every year. Test a sample, and use valid statistical methods to generalize to districts, states, and to the entire country, as is done with the NAEP (National Assessment for Educational Progress).
The NAEP is administered to small groups of students who each take a portion of the test every few years. Results are extrapolated to estimate how larger groups would score.
Let's use the NAEP to determine whether "what if anything children (are) learning from year to year." NAEP scores correlate quite well with other tests, and using NAEP will save a lot of money, as well as make more time available for teaching and learning.

Stephen Krashen

original article:

NAEP scores correlate well: NAEP, 2013. Mapping State Proficiency Standards onto NAEP Scales.

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