US Dept of Ed Action Plan on Testing

On October 24, 2015, the US Department of Education issued this Action Plan regarding testing in schools.

The stated action plan states that it is “a set of principles and steps to correct the balance, protecting the vital role that good assessment plays in guiding progress for students and evaluating schools and educators, while providing help in unwinding practices that have burdened classroom time or not served students or educators well.”

This statement is essentially a guideline which will be enforced based on the re-write of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which is currently in conference in congress.  In a statement, FairTest responded to the Action Plan released by the Department of Ed:

“The new Council of Great City Schools study to which the Obama Administration responded, reinforces widespread reports by parents, students, teachers, and education administrators of standardized testing overuse and misuse. Documenting testing overkill is, however, just the first step toward assessment reform.”

“Now, is the time for concrete steps to reverse counter-productive testing policies, not just more hollow rhetoric and creation of yet another study commission,” Schaeffer continued. “Congress and President Obama must quickly approve a new law overhauling ‘No Child Left Behind’ that eliminates federal test-and-punish mandates. State and local policy makers need to heed their constituents’ ‘Enough is enough!’ message by significantly reducing the volume of standardized exams and eliminating high-stakes consequences. That will help clear the path for the implementation of better forms of assessment.”

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