In the teaching world, standardized testing is a hot topic that is talked about constantly.  One issue that has come to light is the fact that teacher wages, including possible raises, are being affected by their students’ test scores.

The idea is to have students take a test at the beginning of the year, and then again at the end of the year to show improvement, and, in reality, whether or not you as a teacher are doing your job.

Michelle Rhee, the public schools chancellor in Washington, D.C. states that “In order to have the privilege of teaching kids you have to be able to show that you can significantly move their academic achievement levels”.

On the flip side, many teachers are saying that the schools are already too focused on standardized test scores. I tend to side with this side of the argument. Many students experience test anxiety and some have difficulty demonstrating their knowledge through a multiple choice test.  I believe Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers summarized by view of the issue by stating,” Using test scores to measure teacher effectiveness fosters a tendency to focus not on learning but on improving test scores”. Are teachers going to focus on building relationships, learning the material, and building students up or drilling them on the subject matter than is going to be on the test?

Article: http://americanradioworks.publicradio.org/features/testing_teachers/judge.html

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