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More testing is not the answer

Posted: September 14, 2017 4:19 p.m.
Updated: September 15, 2017 1:00 a.m.

A recent national survey done by Gallup and the respected education organization Phi Delta Kappa had some very enlightening things to say about the obsession with standardized testing that has gripped our country for the past 20-25 years. 

The survey strongly indicated that parents across demographic groups believe that standardized testing is both overemphasized and, further, that such testing is not an accurate indicator of educational quality. Parents and teachers in our state and across the nation have reached their saturation point with standardized testing. 

Therefore, it is disturbing that the South Carolina Education Oversight Committee (EOC) is about to adopt an accountability system that bases 90 percent of the accountability for elementary and middle schools on standardized testing. 

This accountability system would also require more standardized testing than is being mandated by the federal government. In addition, the ratings categories being considered by the EOC will always identify 20 percent of all schools as “failing” no matter how much improvement occurs. 

The EOC has botched an opportunity through a tone deaf proposal that resorts to the same old warmed-over bubble tests. The EOC needs to come up with something that actually benefits students versus further enriching the bubble test industry.

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