Standardized Stress Test | Teen Ink

Standardized Stress Test

November 20, 2013
By jennag4 PLATINUM, New City, New York
jennag4 PLATINUM, New City, New York
27 articles 1 photo 36 comments

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Once upon a time students took finals at the end of the year and maybe a midterm. Now in 2013, we are up to a body count of 3-10 tests per year in grades 3 and up. For high schoolers, once a year. The No Child Left Behind campaign has made American kids the most tested on earth.

Even though NCLB has not improved schools, they think it is a good idea to add more tests. That will definitely improve the national average. The core curriculum we use all around the United States today goes back to the Industrial Revolution, where kids were taught how to work in a factory and nothing else, because those kind of jobs were the only ones available. In 2013, art, music, and social studies are reduced and even eliminated from standardized tests.This leads kids to answer superficially to the straightforward tests and not think creatively or deeply to any problem faced. Why should they? Tests with reading comprehensions proclaiming that pineapples don’t have sleeves are useless to a child’s developing mind. Standardized tests may improve the number of grades going up in classrooms, but the education value is still behind most countries in the world.

Teachers on average say that standardized testing does not conclude a childs intelligence level. The tests do not show a teacher what to focus on, or what the children in the class are struggling with. Multiple choice and short answer questions are outdated and predictable, while providing no thought or context to question and answer. Many countries, such as Finland, use advanced teaching techniques for the individual student instead of 1 size fits all. Finland has one of the top education values in the world. The United States is the only “economically stable” to rely fully on the real work- tests, essays, etc,- to graph how the children are doing. The countries that don’t rely fully on these mundane ways of testing score higher on international tests.

There are plenty of other ways to track how children are doing educationally in this country, but the government is set on using these outdated methods. Who is thinking of the kids? What is the old saying in America? No taxation without representation. Why are they heavily testing kids without their say in it?

It is time for an educational revolution

Careful examinations by teachers for the students academically and behaviorally will prove much more successful than a twice-a-year test.

Not only are these tests unnecessary, but many students can be majorly disadvantaged from it. Students from low-income homes, english learners, and students with disabilities can be unnecessarily denied diplomas, held back, and placed in remedial grades because they continually score low on these tests.

Throughout our nation, the pressure of keeping up with these scores and “being the best” is not only placed on the students, but the faculty too. It is so great that they are not only reduced to overworking and over preparing kids for these stress test, but cheating. Just to boost scores to keep their reputations clean.

How awful is it that our nation cannot get something so simple as education straight? It is not for our generation, but for our children and grandchildren. The future of America is being placed on test scores and standardized learning. If something is not done, then America will not only go down on an international scale, but have an incorrect standard for teaching the youth. What can be done about this? How can we keep our nation from going under educationally? The answer is in the question. Get rid of standardized tests. Ask the children realistic questions on tests. Create a committee of adults that will listen to the problems of education, not just say “everything is fine” and “that the kids are just too whiny” Nothing in the U.S. is so neglected with the exception of education. Something needs to be done. Something needs to change, or America will be headed in a downward spiral of illiteracy and a population of uneducated people.

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