If you haven’t heard yet, No Child Left Behind is being left behind by several states. The old law, under former President, G-Dub-ya Bush, made standardized testing the be all-end-all of educational merit; If you didn’t score a certain amount of points on standardized tests that was the end of you and your schools funding. And also a way to prove that your children weren’t smart enough to be what they really wanted to be (#Spiderman #Pony #Firefighter #Princess).
I for one am glad we are moving away from this archaic evaluation system. Creating a system of evaluation that has a random algorithm for what is considered passing puts pressure on the schools, its teachers, its students, and their parents. We are already in competition with each other about who owns the faster car, bigger TV, the better computer, but do we really need compete over who’s got the smartest schools? Isn’t that why “Are you smarter than a 5th grader” was created?
Education is not a competition. It should build a community; it shouldn’t be evaluated on just one “standardized” test, but instead, measure and improve skills that are important to each student’s needs and interests. We are all like snowflakes in that we are all different and will eventually melt back into the earth one day (#morbid). Each of us has unique skills that make us a unique community. The science geek can cure diseases and change the world with medical marvels. The sensitive artist can create a magnificent piece of artwork out of tin foil and all that chewed up gum from under high school desks. The jock can kick the science geek in the stomach to remind him he’s human and stop playing god. We all have a role to play. But a standardized test that wants to know what time Train A will meet Train B if Train A is traveling at speed of 45 mph from Chicago to Boston, means nothing (#checkthetrainschedule #dumbass).
States want use higher educational standards and multiple measures that will gear students into the right college or post high school options, whether it’s a 4 year degree, 2 year degree or military. Education should be catered to the needs of each student. If you aren’t good at math but want to be an engineer, maybe partnering that student with a kid from India could help, and in barter, the kid from India can not wind up in a locker that afternoon (#closetohome). Measuring skills at something the students are interested in will increase test scores since they will be motivated to try harder in achieving something they are passionate about.
No child cares about 2 trains leaving the Chicago station at the same time, or if Little Jimmy has 3 apples and starts to trade with Nina for her oranges. Schools need to start to focus on education that will help students prepare for college and the real world instead of hypothetical’s. With that being said I think the Science geeks and the sensitive artists should take a class that solely focuses on girls.