Justine Cobbett Minnesota

The Elimination of Standardized Testing

This letter is directed to whomever the next president shall be, and states that when in office they should help eliminate and or not make standardized tests a requirement.

Dear Next President,

Congrats on your victory. It must’ve taken a lot of mental toughness to have to deal with all the chaos these last couple years, but you did it and look where you are now! I’m here because I need your help. Together as a duo I believe we can eliminate standardized testing throughout schools across the nation.

According to Thomas Armstrong, Educator & author of the article 15 reasons why standardized tests are useless standardized tests don’t let kids use their creativity. Teachers only teach kids to learn for the tests they’ll have to take, not for life. He also states that these tests create a lot of stress on the kids taking them. It is known that all this stress can be psychologically or physically harmful. Why make a kid go through so much stress and worry for the little time spent of circling in bubbles to questions they will never remember the next day?

In 2001, George Bush made the “No Child Left Behind” act. After this law was passed teachers had to be more strict on giving out big tests, and how they teach their courses to prepare kids for the tests. According to a 2012 Brookings institute study, after this law was passed America has wasted 1.7 billion dollars on standardized testing per year. Schools say students take these tests to show how much they have improved, and Standardized testing does let schools and administration show how well the kid is doing but, it doesn’t let the students actually prove their reasoning to show how they grasped the learning. For all we know the kids couldn’t even be learning anything, just memorizing answers, which is pointless.

The Washington Post’s article 13 ways high-stakes standardized tests hurt students, written by well known reporter Valerie Strauss says that since some schools focus so much on reading and math tests, they don’t always offer creative programs, like art or world languages. The article also says that sometimes there can be school closures because of low test scores. This usually happens in diverse neighborhoods. If this happens, it might be hard or not possible for kids to get an education because the school they go to is farther away. This could also lead to dropping out.

When I was in 7th grade at Heritage Middle School I had all A’s and was one of the best, and smartest in my class, but I did very poorly on my MAP and MCA testing. These tests try and show how average you are as a student, but the tests are so limited they barely show anything. Overall, standardized tests are worthless for students to take, and can affect them negatively.

Mr./Mrs. President, with your help I believe we can eliminate the NCLB act and make standardized tests no longer a requirement for students. If American colleges don’t require good standardized test scores, then maybe applicants will worry more about the quality of their letters, and the next generations that will run America may be more creative.

Thank you for reading,

Justine Hanson

10th Grade

Mendota Heights, MN

Henry Sibley High School


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