School systems and  students need to be tested – an account from the front line of a poorly performing school.

There are quite a few schools that are performing poorly due to inefficient management of funds and resources.  Until a better process is created, the only way to fairly identify these institutions is to measure their performance against other school systems.
NPR – Testing Revolt In Washington State Brings Feds Into Uncharted Waters JULY 16, 201512:03 PM ET
Sure you can test the teachers and administrators all you want, but the real answer is in the abilities of the students.  Their one and only mission should be to support and educate all students.

Coming from a parent of children who hate to test and don’t test well, I truly believe schools that receive government  funding should be held accountable for their performance, that’s our hard earned money at work.  I have a child who is brilliant and easily passes all tests and have a child with a learning disability who was being quietly shoved from grade to grade with barely passing marks, and I have a child who is basically somewhere in the middle.  It was heartbreaking to watch my one child struggle. I fought hard with her believing the teachers and the principal that she just wasn’t trying hard enough.  I tried everything from bribing, begging, to boot camp like discipline and I am haunted by my actions now. We moved and happened to move into a district with higher test scores.  They IMMEDIATELY recognized a disability in visual decoding and comprehension through testing and provided her with intense support. Her confidence and abilities changed dramatically in a few short weeks.

I am still very angry with the neglect and indifference we experience at the other school, to the point that I shake.  What we went through the at the other school, whose test scores eventually exposed an obvious problem in their system, should never have happened and it’s happening to thousands of students every day

.  From the bottom of my heart, for the rest of those kids that are struggling at schools like the one we left, I hope parents don’t get their way and have mandatory testing stopped.  I don’t know if we ever would have figured out my child’s disability on our own or in enough time to help her and I am not sure where my child would have ended up with the constant barrage of “you’re not trying hard enough”.  That would have been tragic.

“If we don’t have ways to measure students’ progress, and if we don’t hold states accountable, the victims will invariably be the kids from poor neighborhoods, children of color and students with disabilities,” – Washington State Senator, Patty Murray

I agree, with my whole heart and mind.

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