The Answer Sheet: About Test


Posted at 03:40 PM ET, 04/09/2014

An 8-year-old talks about test prep

‘I like school. I love school, but I just don’t like to test all the time.’

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:40 PM ET, 04/09/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Test Prep

Posted at 04:37 PM ET, 03/21/2014

Chicago students pulled out of class for questioning over test boycott

They were questioned about teachers boycott -- without parental permission.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:37 PM ET, 03/21/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Test Boycott

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 03/14/2014

How ‘platooning’ and data walls are changing elementary school

Not in a good way.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 03/14/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Test Scores

Posted at 02:42 PM ET, 02/13/2014

Why boy born without complete brain has to take 2014 standardized test

Florida does provide a waiver process, but it is complicated and time-consuming.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:42 PM ET, 02/13/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Test Obsession

Posted at 03:53 PM ET, 02/04/2014

Parent of dying boy has to prove her son can’t take standardized test (update)

‘This madness has to stop.’

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:53 PM ET, 02/04/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Standardized Test

Posted at 05:07 PM ET, 12/18/2013

What does rise in D.C. test scores really mean? Not much.

The increase in scores sounds impressive, but there are big questions about why they happened.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:07 PM ET, 12/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Test Scores

Posted at 12:24 PM ET, 12/09/2013

Education activists protest, rally in scores of cities (despite the weather)

The ‘National Day of Action’ .’

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:24 PM ET, 12/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  educaton, School Reform, Standardized Test, teachers union

Posted at 06:29 PM ET, 11/22/2013

International test scores: Getting the data straight

Here is the third post in a debate about the relative importance of international test scores as measures of the quality of U.S. public education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:29 PM ET, 11/22/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  International Test Scores

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 11/20/2013

A debate: What do international test scores tell us?

What’s the link between education and the economy?

By Valerie Strauss  |  07:00 AM ET, 11/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  International Test Scores

Posted at 02:09 PM ET, 11/14/2013

The fetishization of international test scores

How we make something seem important even when it isn’t.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:09 PM ET, 11/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Test Scores

Posted at 09:45 AM ET, 10/04/2013

Good student Laela Gray held back over 1 point on test

This story offers a perfect illustration of what "high stakes" standardized testing means.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:45 AM ET, 10/04/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  In Florida, Standardized Test

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 09/12/2013

What does ‘quality teacher’ mean anyway?

Have school reformers too narrowly defined the term?

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 09/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Is It All About Raising Test Scores, Is It All About Test Scores?, Teacher preparation

Posted at 10:02 AM ET, 09/10/2013

Good or bad? New rating system can’t decide about this principal

Three glaring problems with a new teacher evaluation system, including giving two different scores to a single principal.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:02 AM ET, 09/10/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Based on Test Scores, Controversial Educator Assessment, Teacher Assessment

Posted at 01:32 PM ET, 08/31/2013

A quiz on America’s core curriculum

Decide for yourself if the familiar core curriculum is so problem-free it’s appropriate to standardize it with the Common Core State Standards.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:32 PM ET, 08/31/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Curriculum, Test Yourself

Posted at 05:59 PM ET, 06/18/2013

Education Department listens to (some) reason

Education Secretary Arne Duncan gives an extra year for implementation of new teacher evaluations linked to Common Core tests.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:59 PM ET, 06/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Arne Duncan, Common Core State Standards, Gives Flexibility on Test-Linked Evaluations, Teacher Evaluation

Posted at 06:02 AM ET, 06/13/2013

How test scores can be deceiving

They can seem to indicate one thing when they actually mean another.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:02 AM ET, 06/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  School Reform, Study on Massachusetts Reform, Test Scores

Posted at 03:02 AM ET, 05/16/2013

Seattle teachers boycotting test score a victory

Test scores will no longer be a graduation requirement.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:02 AM ET, 05/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Standardized Test, Test Revolt, The Fight Over MAP

Posted at 05:01 AM ET, 05/08/2013

Eighth grader: What bothered me most about new Common Core test

A 14-year-old boy in New York details what he found so annoying about the new Common Core-aligned English test he and other students around the state just took.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:01 AM ET, 05/08/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Common Core Tests, Standardized Tests, Worse Than Pineapple Test

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 05/02/2013

Grading writing: The art and science -- and why computers can't do it

Writing is a fundamental human act. What really goes into assessing it?

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 05/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  A Quiz, First, Test Grading, Writing

Posted at 04:03 AM ET, 04/23/2013

Standardized test questions kids have to answer that don't even count

Parents and students may not know this, but all of the questions kids have to answer on standardized tests don't actually count. Here's why.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:03 AM ET, 04/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Field Test Questions, Field Testing, Standardized Tests

Posted at 04:02 AM ET, 04/16/2013

Teacher: Yes, the testing culture does contribute to cheating

An award-winning elementary school teacher writes the third part in something of a debate on the Atlanta test cheating scandal and what/who is to blame when educators cheat on student standardized tests.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:02 AM ET, 04/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Environment Matters, Standardized Tests, Test Cheating

Posted at 09:20 AM ET, 04/15/2013

A tweet that says it all

The effect of the test-based school reform in 26 words and an ampersand.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:20 AM ET, 04/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  About Test Obsession, Standardized Testing, Test Anxiety

Posted at 11:06 AM ET, 04/14/2013

Count the errors (update)

... in this D.C. Education Committee description of an upcoming hearing on test security.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:06 AM ET, 04/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  D.C. Council, DC Council, Test Cheating

Posted at 10:11 AM ET, 04/14/2013

Probe of past D.C. test cheating called 'impractical' (update)

The D.C. Council's Education Committee will discuss the standardized test cheating scandal at a previously scheduled hearing on Thursday that, ironically, was intended to be about about test security .

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:11 AM ET, 04/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Better Late Than Never, D.C. Schools, Michelle Rhee, Standardized Tests, Test Cheating

Posted at 06:02 AM ET, 04/12/2013

NY's 2013 'High School Principal of Year' is fighting state over reform

New York State's new High School Principal of the Year is Carol Burris, a school leader in Long Island who has been a leader in a fight with state officials over reforms

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:02 AM ET, 04/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Opposes Test-Based Accountability, School Reform

Posted at 01:02 PM ET, 04/11/2013

The test didn't make them cheat

A leading educator takes issue with Bill Ayers' post which said the road to the Atlanta cheating scandal "runs through the White House.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:02 PM ET, 04/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  A Response to Bill Ayers, Standardized Tests, Test Cheating

Posted at 12:09 AM ET, 04/09/2013

The absolute worst story (and video) about standardized testing

Here's a video about a boy born without most of his brain who is being forced to take a standardized test in Florida because the law requires it. Really.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:09 AM ET, 04/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Boy With Partial Brain Forced to Take Test, Standardized Test

Posted at 04:02 AM ET, 04/03/2013

Bill Ayers: Road to Atlanta cheating scandal 'runs right through White House'

Longtime educator Bill Ayers focuses on federal school reform policies that led to the Atlanta cheating scandal.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:02 AM ET, 04/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Standardized Tests, Test Cheating

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 04/01/2013

Atlanta test cheating: Tip of the iceberg?

In the past four academic years, test cheating by adults has been confirmed in 37 states and Washington D.C. Atlanta may not have been the worst of it.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 04/01/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  In 35 States and D.C., Test Cheating

Posted at 02:53 PM ET, 03/31/2013

50 ways adults in schools 'cheat' on standardized tests

How do adults in a school cheat on standardized tests? Count the ways.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:53 PM ET, 03/31/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  After Exam, Before, During, Test Cheating

Posted at 04:02 PM ET, 03/30/2013

List of charges against 35 in Atlanta test cheating indictment

Here's the release issued by the Fulton County District Attorney's Office in Georgia with details and a list of charges in the Atlanta test cheating indictment.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:02 PM ET, 03/30/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Charged Under RICO, Standardized Tests, Test Cheating

Posted at 03:21 PM ET, 03/14/2013

What happened when a Rhode Island state senator took a student standardized test?

A Rhode Island state senator was one of the first of some 50 adults who have agreed to take a version of the state's standardized test, part of an action aimed at protesting a new high school testing graduation requirement that students say is unfair.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:21 PM ET, 03/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  How Did She Do?, More Adults Taking Exam, More Adults Taking Test, School Reform, Standardized Tests

Posted at 01:05 AM ET, 02/18/2013

2013 Presidents' Day quiz

How much have you learned (or, rather, do you remember) about U.S. presidents?

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:05 AM ET, 02/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  American History, Test Yourself

Posted at 02:17 PM ET, 02/06/2013

Seattle teachers face sanctions for refusing to give standardized test

Seattle high school teachers who are refusing to give students a state standardized test that they say is fatally flawed now face sanctions, and students are taking the test this week by order of state officials who ordered administrators to administer it.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:17 PM ET, 02/06/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Administrators Give Test to Students, Standardized Test, Testing Revolt

Posted at 11:39 AM ET, 01/26/2013

Teacher boycott of standardized test in Seattle spreads

A boycott of Washington state's mandated standardized test by teachers at a Seattle school is spreading to other schools and winning support across the country, including from the two largest teachers' unions, parents, researchers and education activists.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:39 AM ET, 01/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Does President Obama Know?, Garifled Teachers, Standardized Test Revolt, Standardized Tests

Posted at 11:23 AM ET, 01/03/2013

New College Board chief cites 'problems' with SAT

Guess who thinks there's more than one problem with the SAT? David Coleman, the man who was recently selected to run the organization that owns the SAT, says he has issues withthe essay section. Here's a look at Coleman and what else he said.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:23 AM ET, 01/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  College Admissions, College Board, Expect Changes in Test, SAT, Sees 'Revision'

Posted at 12:57 PM ET, 12/11/2012

What international test scores really mean

Here we go again. New international test scores were released today and their meaning are in the eye of the interpreter. Here are some headlines from different new sites with some different takes on the results -- and one headline you didn't see but should.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:57 PM ET, 12/11/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  International Tests, Test Scores, The Headline You Didn't See

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 02/02/2011

The Bartleby Project

A veteran educator writes about the country's obsession with standardized testing and what might be done about it.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 02/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  education reform, president obama, school reform, standardized test industry, standardized tests, test industry, the bartleby project

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 01/24/2011

Test scores and economic competitiveness

What does international economic competitiveness have to do with kids’ test scores? Not much.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:00 AM ET, 01/24/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  international competitiveness, international test scores, pisa scores, test scores, u.s. economy

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010

Test scores can't prove whether teacher experience matters

People such as Bill Gates and Arne Duncan who say teacher experience doesn't matter much are relying on standardized test scores for evidence, even though the tests fail to provide adequate evidence for drawing such a conclusion.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evalution, teachers, test scores

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/22/2010

The lowdown on standardized tests and how they are scored

If you think machines score all of the standardized tests kids take, guess again. Rather, an army of low-paid, poorly trained temps score them. Test scorers tell the tale.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/22/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  common core standards, how tests are scored, no child left behind, race to the top, standardized test industry, standardized test scoring, standardized tests, test industry, test scoring

Posted at 10:00 AM ET, 12/15/2010

Principal seeks to replace student body, improve scores

A principal asks the Kansas state commissioner of education to replace the entire student body at high school with students from another high school where test scores are higher. Yes, it's fake news, and yes, you will laugh and cry.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:00 AM ET, 12/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Laugh and cry | Tags:  fake news, mr. teachbad, test scores

Posted at 04:43 PM ET, 12/14/2010

How Shanghai topped PISA rankings -- and why it's not big news in China

Q) How did Shanghai students, participating in a high-profile international exam for the first time, able to land at the top of the math, reading and science rankings? A) An obsession with test taking, to the exclusion of a lot of other things. Diane Ravitch and Yong Zhao explain.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:43 PM ET, 12/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests | Tags:  Yong Zhao, diane ravitch, finland and pisa, international test comparisons, international test rankings, international test scores, pisa, pisa rankings, pisa results, shanghai and pisa, shanghai students, u.s. performance on international tests, u.s. performance on pisa

Posted at 01:53 PM ET, 12/14/2010

College Board promotes holiday gift of ... test prep!

You can stop worrying what to get your teenager for Christmas. The non-profit College Board has a suggestion: test prep!

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:53 PM ET, 12/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests | Tags:  christmas gifts, college board, college board and sat, sat, sat test, sat test prep, test prep, test prep courses

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 12/13/2010

Willingham: What causes performance decline across grades?

Cognitive scientist looks at why student performance declines across grades.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 12/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  arne duncan, daniel willingham, pirls, pisa, pisa scores, test scores, timss

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/13/2010

A Felliniesque education story

A veteran teacher writes that if today's education debate seems Felliniesque, don’t worry; you have not lost your senses. "What is apparent, however, is that the people who run the show have."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  david steiner, fellini, how to assess teachers, merryl tisch, new york board of education, nyc schools, releasing test scores, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teachers, test scores released

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 12/12/2010

What international test scores really tell us: Lessons buried in PISA report

Buried in the data report about the latest international results of PISA are lessons that show how U.S. education policy is failing.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 12/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  PISA, PISA scores, U.S. PISA scores, arne duncan, education policy, how u.s. fares in international rankings, international rankings, international test scores, obama education policy, pisa, the american dream

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/07/2010

Assessing teachers without fetishizing test-based reforms

An educator writes that policymakers are fetishizing student scores on standardized tests and using them as a crutch rather than turning to sensible solutions to improve public schools. There are better ways to assess teacher quality, he says.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  assessing teachers, los angeles times, no child left behind, race to the top, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, test scores, value added

Posted at 01:52 PM ET, 12/05/2010

When teachers are their own worst enemies

An educator/author argues that teachers, however unwittingly, helped create the accountability movement that is now "choking" them.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:52 PM ET, 12/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  accountability movement, california standards test, common core standards, common standards, criterion-based tests, public schools, school reform, standardized test, standards movement, teachers

Posted at 06:09 PM ET, 11/18/2010

The NAEP scores problem

When you live by test scores, you run the risk of dying by them too -- or, at least, the policies that dictated their importance should.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:09 PM ET, 11/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Education Secretary Duncan, Education Secretary Duncan | Tags:  arne duncan, education secretary arne duncan, naep, naep scores, national assessment of educational progress, standardized tests, test scores

Posted at 11:55 AM ET, 11/13/2010

Teacher: Data, my new dirty word

A teacher explains how an obsession with data has led to the redefinition of teaching and learning: "Teaching itself has become redefined as generating, collecting, and using data, and learning has become redefined as the curve connecting data points. This is a fundamental shift in how educators think, talk, and go about educating our children. Unfortunately, it is not a shift that serves anyone but the data-collectors very well."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:55 AM ET, 11/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  data, education, educational data, mad math minutes, mad minutes, nclb, no child left behind, school reform, schools, teachers, teaching and learning, test data

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/21/2010

English teacher: Data can drive us down wrong road

An English teacher writes: "Strict adherence to data-driven instruction can lead schools to push aside science and social studies to drill students on isolated reading benchmarks.... It is difficult to teach kids to read well if they don’t learn to enjoy reading. It is impossible to teach kids to read well while denying them the knowledge they need to make sense of complex material. Following the data often forces teachers to do just that."

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Learning, Learning, Learning | Tags:  compare and contrast, fcat, florida comprehensive assessment test, standardized tests, teachers, teaching, test questions

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 10/14/2010

The PSAT/National Merit test: What you should know

What you should know about the PSAT if you have a high school student.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 10/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Admissions, College Admissions, College Admissions | Tags:  National Merit, National Merit scholarships, PSAT, PSAT prep, Princeton Review, SAT prep, college admissions, college scholarships, scholarships, test prep

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 10/06/2010

Ravitch: Why teachers should never be rated by test scores

Education historian Diane Ravitch writes: "...Value-added assessment should not be used at all. Never. It has a wide margin of error. It is unstable. A teacher who is highly effective one year may get a different rating the next year depending on which students are assigned to his or her class. Ratings may differ if the tests differ. To the extent it is used, it will narrow the curriculum and promote teaching to tests. Teachers will be mislabeled and stigmatized. Many factors that influence student scores will not be counted at all."

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 10/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  diane ravitch, how to assess teache, l.a. times, l.a. times database, los angeles times, ravitch book, rigoberto ruelas, school reform, teacher and suicide, teacher assessment, teacher commits suicide, teacher database, teacher evaluation, teachers, test scores, value added

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 09/17/2010

How the ACT caught up with the SAT

For more than 80 years, the SAT has been the nation’s dominant, standardized college admissions exam. This year – for the first time – as many students in the high school class of 2010 sat for the rival ACT as took the SAT. How did it happen?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 09/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  act, college admissions, crossing the finish line, fairtest, sat, sat act, sat or act, sat vs. act, standardized tests, test-optional colleges, test-optional schools, writing section act, writing section sat

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 09/16/2010

Study shows test score improvements

For those who follow test scores, here's a new study of five years of assessment trends showing that U.S. 4th and 8th graders are doing better in reading and math than they were in 2005. It’s not just according to the states’ own tests used for No Child Left Behind accountability, but also according to the federally sponsored National Assessment of Educational Progress.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 09/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests | Tags:  center on education progress, jack jenningers, study on test scores, test scores, test scores increase, test scores rising, test scores up

Posted at 11:13 AM ET, 08/07/2010

Why you should be skeptical about standardized test scores

A Columbia University teacher writes about the problems with our faith our standardized test scores: "Yes, we 'just' need better tests. But creating better tests is very hard and very expensive. And in a system as vast and complex as ours, it’ll be tempting to continue using tests that can be graded quickly and that don’t look very different from the ones we now use. But without a radically different approach to standardized testing in this country, we are unlikely to get different results."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:13 AM ET, 08/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  in, obama and education, obama's education policies, rhe, rhee fires teachers, standardized test scores, using standardized tests for high stakes decisions

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 08/04/2010

Ravitch: Mayoral control means zero accountability

Education historian Diane Ravitch writes about how mayoral control in New York City -- and other cities -- has hardly proven to be the panacea for urban ills that its advocates once contended.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 08/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Education Secretary Duncan, Education Secretary Duncan, Education Secretary Duncan, Education Secretary Duncan, Education Secretary Duncan | Tags:  bloomberg and schools, diane ravitch, klein and schools, mayoral control, new york city schools, new york city test scores, new york state test results, ny test scores

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 08/03/2010

Proficiency should mean college ready—and an acceptance letter

Robert Pondiscio writes about the damage done by the test proficiency bubble in New York: "Here’s the dirty little secret about proficiency. There’s not much upside in being honest."

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 08/03/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  new york and proficient, new york test scores, proficiency and test scores

Posted at 11:59 AM ET, 07/19/2010

New test scoring problems for Pearson

On the heels of a fiasco in Florida with scoring the state achievement tests, NCS Pearson has a new scoring problem, this time in Minnesota. Here's a list of similar problems, underscoring why using standardized test scores for high-stakes decisions is wrong.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:59 AM ET, 07/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests | Tags:  FCAT results delayed, FCAT scores delayed, FairTEST, fairtest, minnesota test scores delayed, ncs pearson, pearson and FCAT, pearson and minnesota tests, pearson and scoring tests, standardized tests, test results delayed

Posted at 11:02 AM ET, 07/15/2010

Florida's FCAT scandal -- the next chapter

Let’s go to Florida for the latest entry in the category of “you can’t make up this stuff.” Here's the latest twist in the scandal over the state's 2010 standardized test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:02 AM ET, 07/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests | Tags:  FCAT, eric smith, florida comprehensive assessment test, florida education department, ncs pearson, pearson and fcats, problems with fcats, standardized tests

Posted at 04:30 PM ET, 07/13/2010

Rhee’s problem with D.C.’s new test scores

D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee has a problem, and it’s not the fact that elementary school standardized test scores just went down (at, it is worth noting, a bad time for Mayor Adrian Fenty, who appointed her and is seeking re-election).

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:30 PM ET, 07/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  CAS scores in d.c., d.c. CAS, d.c. schools, d.c. standardized tests, d.c. test scores down, d.c. test scores mixed, d.c. test scores rise, fairtest, michelle rhee and reform, monty neill, rhee and test scores, tmichscho

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/09/2010

The problem with linking phys ed to academics

Sure, physical education has been linked to academic achievement. But why should it be? Isn't being physically fit a goal unto itself?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  benefits of physical education, guest bloggers, health, pe and academics, physical education, physical education and academics, physical education and test scores, sean slade, teaching to the whole child, the whole child

Posted at 03:31 PM ET, 06/25/2010

Extremism in school reform is not a virtue

A longtime educator says it is time to recognize the complexity of the challenges presented by ailing school districts and to avoid simplistic, extreme positions which seem so popular today.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:31 PM ET, 06/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  charter schools and teachers, colorado and teachers law, eliminating teacher tenure, merit pay and teachers, teacher tenure, teacher tenure and reform, teachers and accountability, teachers pay and test scores, value of teacher tenure

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 06/16/2010

The story behind rise in Texas test scores

Good news: Texas schoolchildren performed better on the 2010 Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills this year than they did last, according to preliminary results released this month. Bad news: It turns out that students could pass the test answering fewer questions correctly than in 2009.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 06/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests | Tags:  TAKS, TAKS results, Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills, high-stakes testing and Texas, standardized test results, standardized tests

Posted at 11:15 AM ET, 06/12/2010

Stop timing the ACT and SAT

It's way past time for the College Board and the ACT Inc. to stop timing their exams. Kids should be able to take as much time -- or as little -- on the test as they want.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:15 AM ET, 06/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  SAT and ACT, SAT and ACT, SAT and ACT | Tags:  act, college admissions tests, college board and extended time, extended time on act, extended time on sat, fairtest and sat, how long is the act?, how long is the sat?, how to get extended time, howard gardner and sat, sat, sat and act, time limits on act, time limits on sat, timing the sat, which test is longer

Posted at 11:12 AM ET, 06/11/2010

Florida education chief ‘outraged’ at Pearson

Florida’s Education Commissioner Eric J. Smith has blasted NCS Pearson for a big delay in the reporting of the results of the 2010 Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, saying that he is “outraged” and calling it “absolutely unacceptable.”

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:12 AM ET, 06/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests | Tags:  delay in test scores, fcat, florida comprehensive assessment test, pearson and florida

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 06/08/2010

Study: N.Y. teacher performance pay program flops

On the heels of a study about an ineffective program in Chicago linking student test scores to teacher pay, here's another one, with the same results, from a New York program. Do you see a pattern?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 06/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  No Child Left Behind, No Child Left Behind, No Child Left Behind | Tags:  d.c. teachers contract, merit pay, michelle rhee, nclb, performance pay, teachers, teachers performance pay, test scores and pay

Posted at 05:00 PM ET, 06/02/2010

Must we link P.E. (and everything else) to test scores?

Is there nothing in education today that we do not feel the need to justify through improved standardized test scores? A new report is out about physical education in public schools. The news is not good.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 PM ET, 06/02/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Health, Health, Health | Tags:  american heart association, let's move, michelle obama, michelle obama's anti-obesity campaign, obama and get Fit, obesity, obesity epidemic, physical activity and health, physical education, physical education and test scores, recommended physical education guidelines, standardized test scores

Posted at 10:00 AM ET, 05/16/2010

Princeton Reviews takes down ad claims

The Princeton Review test prep company has voluntarily agreed to stop making certain advertising claims about how many points it can help students improve on various school admissions tests.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:00 AM ET, 05/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Admissions, College Admissions | Tags:  Kaplan and ads, Princeton Review, Princeton Review and ads, claims by Princeton Review, claims by test prep companies, college admissions, getting better scores on tests, improving test scores, standardized tests, test claims, test prep companies

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 05/12/2010

Teachers refuse to give standardized tests to kids

Maybe there is a lesson in this for American teachers. Saying that they are sick and tired of forcing kids to take standardized tests, thousands of teachers in England are refusing to administer high-stakes standardized tests in English and math this week.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 05/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests | Tags:  boycott in Britain, standardized tests, teachers, teachers boycott test, test boycott

Posted at 10:05 AM ET, 04/26/2010

The D.C. area: Obsessed with SAT scores

If you have any doubt just how obsessed folks in the greater Washington D.C. area are with getting their children into college, you need look no further than the Washington Post’s list of best-selling books.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:05 AM ET, 04/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Admissions, College Admissions | Tags:  SAT, college admissions, college board, official sat study guide, sat test advice, tips on taking the sat

Posted at 04:37 PM ET, 04/06/2010

More for Florida educators to be angry about

Florida's teachers are already outraged about legislation expected to become law that would end tenure, require the creation of more standardized tests and link teacher pay to test scores. Now there's a bill that would allow corporations contribute money to a fund that provides school vouchers and then deduct it from their taxes.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:37 PM ET, 04/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  Florida, Florida tax credits, Florida teacher tenure bill, Florida vouchers, Senate Bill 2126, Senate Bill 6, Standardized test, school voucher, standardized test, teacher tenure bill, teachers

Posted at 03:40 PM ET, 02/05/2010

Saturday’s ACT exam rescheduled in storm areas

Scores of testing centers where thousands of students were planning to take the ACT college admissions exam tomorrow have closed because of the massive storm marching up the East Coast. The website has a long list of sites that have been closed and will post the new date when it becomes available.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:40 PM ET, 02/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Admissions, College Admissions, College Admissions | Tags:  ACT test, college admissions

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 01/20/2010

Does this sound fair?

The National Board of Medical Examiners denied a request by medical student Frederick Romberg to have extra time to take the United States Medical Licensing Examination. Romberg is a 41-year-old student at Yale Medical School who has been diagnosed with dyslexia and ADHD. He is appealing the decision. Here is what Romberg told the board, and what the board told him. How would you decide the case? ... It wasn't until he was an adult that he finally learned what was causing his academic difficulties. A professor asked him why he was taking so much longer than anyone else to finish a 10-question quiz.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 01/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Learning Disabilities | Tags:  learning disabilities, test accommodations

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 09/09/2009

SPOTLIGHT: The Man Who Takes SAT Tests for a Living

“On the SAT, if you’re brilliant and slow - you’ll get a very average score.”--test expert Edward Carroll Edward Carroll takes tests for a living. To be precise, he takes the SAT, the dreaded college admissions test owned by the...

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 09/09/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  SAT and ACT, SAT and ACT, SAT and ACT | Tags:  ACT, SAT, college admissions, test preparation