October 21, 2016
Dear Future President:
Standardized testing is causing a bad effect in the U.S. school systems because these ¨important¨ tests are taking over the regular teaching agenda and are causing more stress in a student's life. Many students are willing to admit the mental and sometimes physical problems these tests are causing them. We don't need standardized testing in schools because it causes stress in students and because it doesn't allow students to get a meaningful education.
Some recent events is when the PAARC test came out even though these tests were only about 7 questions, the average grade was failing. These tests cause so much stress in a student's life because it's you either pass and graduate or fail and not graduate. These tests are becoming the only reason for going to school. I think these state tests are a complete waste of the teacher's time and the students' time. Because of these tests, we don't get to learn the things we should be learning.
It is said that many of these tests are not very accurate when it comes down to it. ¨Seventy three percent of Teach100 Mentors believe that standardized test scores are not an accurate measurement of student understanding, and 89 percent of those surveyed believe that student test scores are not an accurate measurement of teacher effectiveness¨ ( Manno). This quote shows that a study of how well students can do on tests, and if they are truly effective or not. Common core learning skills are no longer what school is all about. Common core skills were introduced to help prepare students with certain subjects and help them develop a better understanding to the subject.¨The Common Core’s main goal is to measure all students on a level playing field, and it focuses on developing students’ “college and career readiness” skills¨ (Manno). Some schools no longer use the common core system; instead, they use techniques on how to pass a test. Learning is no longer fun at all because we just have to prepare for a test! The whole school year feels like ¨crunch time¨ because your teachers are rushing around trying as hard as they can to prepare you for a test when really you'd rather learn something that will always be beneficial in your life.
Some may say standardize testing helps the board of education understand what the students are learning well or not learning well. Most educators think otherwise, ¨Participation in class discussions, project-based assessments, observations, performance tasks and portfolios are other metrics, besides standardized testing, that I feel are key to measuring student understanding and achievement¨(Lerchenfeldt). This statement shows that students can succeed in alternative ways other than testing.
Testing is just another excuse for school systems to stress out kids, in my opinion. Many people can not stand the stress of working on a million different thing to pass a pointless test. I say we need to stop the standardized testing and get back on track reaching toward the goal to have students achieve a great education! ¨While students may be 20% of our population, they are 100% our future¨(Piontek).
We can change the school system for the benefit of the students. Thank you future President for taking the time to read my letter. I hope a beneficial solution will come about and you'll be able to get the school systems back on track.