I support the opt-out families and their call for more sensible assessments.
As a resident of North Carolina, I share the concerns of the North Carolina families who have chosen not to participate in the EOG tests this spring, and I support their actions.
Like those families, I am appalled by the harm that an expanding number of high-stakes standardized tests has done to North Carolina public schools, harm that includes narrowing the focus of instruction, prompting teaching to the test, placing unhealthy levels of stress on both students and teachers, reducing students' love of school and learning, and driving excellent teachers out of teaching.
I have no problem with either assessment or evaluation. North Carolina's children need excellent schools and excellent teachers. But this unproductive focus of time, energy and money on the discredited strategy of high-stakes standardized testing is taking us further and further from that goal.
I join the call for our state and federal representatives to turn to a more sensible strategy of fewer, performance-based evaluations that are used to inform instruction rather than to reward or punish.