biggest arguments made for the regime of standardized assessment by the States,
for the State, of the State’s people, is that we must have school accountability.
Without the BS test (Big Standardized test, credit to Peter Greene,
Curmudgucation, for coining the term), how will we know whether schools are any
test, there is no accountability.
come as a great surprise to the accreditation agencies that have been reviewing
schools since the mid-20th century and longer. Even the federal
government keeps track and gives its “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval” to
the agencies that meet its demands. (http://www2.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/accreditation_pg6.html)
school grading process inaugurated in Florida under then-Governor Jeb Bush,
which relies mostly upon one standardized test result and a few other criteria
constantly under revision, the purpose of which is to maintain whatever
narrative the Florida Department of Education wants to trumpet to the media,
the accreditation process takes place over months. At its culmination, a team
of professional educators (unlike the amateurs consisting of politicians,
do-gooder philanthropist businesspersons, and anyone else who thinks that
having gone to school as a student makes them more of an expert than people who
have actual experience teaching) visits each school to observe classes, meet
with the administration, talk to teachers and students, review work, and assess
the learning environment. Afterward, they review the evidence they acquired and
determine whether to continue to give the school accreditation.
serious process. Teams of stakeholders (admins, teachers, parents, and more)
meet for months in advance of the visit to make sure everything is up to
scratch. If not, corrections are made.
is not automatic. In a decision that is still remembered today, Duval County
Public Schools lost its accreditation in the 1960s: http://www.jaxdailyrecord.com/showstory.php?Story_id=544275
galvanizing action. City leaders reacted, the loss was a major motivation
behind the city/county consolidation, and after that became a reality, the
schools received the necessary support and gained back the accreditation they
is a rigorous process.
school accountability through the accreditation process. We do not need a
flawed, invalid, unreliable test manipulated by bureaucrats, politicians, and
profiteers. We do not need a school report card like the one Florida inflicted
upon the nation.