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Does CRCT Testing Pass the Test?

Or is it time to give it an "F" and find another way to test competency in our school system?

After stressing for most of the year, students, teachers and parents can finally relax.

There is almost a full year before the dreaded Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests, or CRCTs, come around again. For much of the school year, teachers worry that they haven’t taught enough, students worry that they haven’t learned enough — and parents wonder what they can give their children to eat to maximize their concentration on CRCT test days.

But after all is said and done, is it really worth it? Robert Schaefer, public education director for FairTest National Center for Fair and Open Testing, doesn’t think so.

In a recent op-ed in the Atlanta Journal Constitution titled “When put to a test, testing culture flunks,” Schaefer said the current testing culture encourages cheating. He said it wasn't just the Atlanta Public School System that resorted to cheating to meet the testing standards. Schaefer said FairTest has documented similar test score manipulations in 33 states, plus the District of Columbia. 

Schaefer is one of a growing number of educators who say the current system just does not work. On top of the incentive to cheat, Schaefer said a study released last year by the National Research Council of the National Academies of Science concluded that high-states testing has not improved the quality of education.

So what do you think? Is it time to give CRCTs an F and find another way to test the competency of teachers and their students?

Karsten Torch May 02, 2012 at 04:04 PM
All standardized testing really does is make those in charge feel better about what they're doing, actually justifying their actions and intentions. If you attach salary hikes or anything to this testing, then of course people will cheat. The kids are also taught answers to questions, not HOW to get to those answers, which will be detrimental later in life. I work with my daughter regularly on her work, making sure she knows why an answer is what it is, changing things up so that she can arrive at the answer. She's not taught this. And I think she has an advantage in the schools, because she's in gifted classes and so receives some special attention and instruction. Public schools have become places to teach children to be good subjects, to go out and create wealth for the government, not to think for themselves. Truth is, teachers should teach, children should learn, and they should be tested as they go. Principals know who the good teachers are and aren't. And they should be free to fire or reprimand teachers as needed. And if the principals don't know who the good ones are, then maybe we need different principals. They're the boss, they should pay attention. Just my 2 cents' worth.....
Rebecca McCarthy May 02, 2012 at 04:36 PM
Thanks for contributing...
Rahandice Fortune May 16, 2012 at 04:22 AM
People lets not be blind these test are put out here so they can compare our children to God knows what! The testbscores determine how many prisons will be built in the near future dont be fooled by the fake concern for your child or his/her teacher thats all bull crap. Georgia had the worst education that I have ever seen period. I was lucky that I didnt have to attend school here until I was in the 11th grade. I got the basics in chicago. Do your research please parents! Im done!
Rebecca McCarthy May 16, 2012 at 12:07 PM
Thanks for your comments. I'm not convinced these tests do anything except stress out the children and their teachers.
North Georgia Weather May 16, 2012 at 01:56 PM
LOL! Testing takes time more than anything. Grading for the most part is automatic as the test are scanned, so no real time wasted there. Sorry guys, while I agree there could be fewer "major" test, how else do you evaluate student achievement and be able to make apples to apples comparisons with other students around the country?

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