Joseph Cruz Garcia
“The Case against Standardized Testing” by Alfie Kohn clearly outlines quite a few problems with thousands of schools across the nation placing so much emphasis and meaning on standardized testing. Alfie Kohn has been described by Time Magazine as perhaps the country’s most outspoken critic of education’s fixation on grades and test scores. Our students are tested to an extent that is unprecedented in American history and unparalleled anywhere in the world. Politicians and businesspeople, determined to get tough with students and teachers, have increased the pressure to raise the standardized test scores. The children that are taking the tests may not always be the greatest benefactors from high test scores. If not the kids, then who are the greatest benefactors? Kohn believes that politicians and district board members are the ones who get the most out of children receiving high test scores. “Higher test scores aren’t truly benefitting our children the way they should be or the way politicians and board members say they are” p 39 CAST Kohn. Kohn believes that politicians use the raising of standardized test scores to show educational improvement in their area and use that as a basis for their reelection or to show that their efforts have caused improvement in the educational system. District board members use higher test scores almost exactly like politicians; they hide behind test score improvement to say that what they’re doing is helping the children. They do nothing more than wait for an improvement in scores to occur and put their face in front of them.
Schools may not always get better test scores as a result of better schooling but instead just lower standards of a test so it looks like educational improvement has occurred. “Schools lower standards to improve scores which only looks good on paper but hurts the educational integrity of those schools” p 44 CAST Kohn. The only people who are hurt by lowering standards are...
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