Fight Back Friday: If the testing obsession bothers you…

then vent about it!

Join NYSUT’s “Tell It Like It Is” letter-writing campaign to send messages to State Education Commissioner John King and the Board of Regents. The last issue of NYSUT United offered just a few of the thousands of solutions members have provided to the union.

Perhaps it’s the reporter in me that wants to hear the complaints. It’s heartwrenching to read how students are being shortchanged from the latest batch of what was submitted..  Students are:

  • missing out on hands on projects that reinforce and enrich their learning in the other content areas because of lack of time .
  • constantly having to interrupt the flow of learning and momentum of the curriculum to leave the room and take tests that are not reinforcing the learning at hand .
  • not taking tests seriously any more because there are so many of them.
  • made to feel like failures. (One teacher wrote specifically about students with disabilities having to sit for 540 hours of tests that are too difficult for them.)
  • losing over three weeks of instructional time to testing here at the high school level. “In the fall, it took 2 weeks for the students to complete the NWEA testing. In addition, exams had to be given as pretests for our SLO. We recently lost class time for the students to take midterms. Because we are a school with a high transfer rate from outside NY, many students must take regent exams in January. There are new seniors that must sit for 5 exams in January and and often additional ones in math and science. This adds up to a significant loss of instructional time.”

These are just a few of what teachers from across the state have written. Please take the time to write to the state’s top policymakers in education and tell them what your students are going through.

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  1. Allison Noonan March 2, 2013 at 7:06 am #

    As a teacher, the emphasis on testing is degrading, but as a mother of twin 9-year olds going through the third grade, the emphasis on testing is heartbreaking. They just lost three days of instructional time completing “practice ELA tests”. When my son came home with his snack in his lunch pail untouched, I asked him why he did not eat it. He replied, “the class cut our snack time short for the tests”.(!) A collective shame on us.

  2. Jan Hamilton March 28, 2013 at 10:34 am #

    As a retired teacher, the testing is totally out of bounds. The students are frustrated along with the teachers. The students are losing instruction time while the teacher’s teach for the test. The testing has to stop!

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