When I left my career as an education journalist, I wanted to reinvent myself as an education activist. I have done that over the years by serving on the board of a charter school, starting a neighborhood group to support my local elementary school, and writing op-eds about education for Get Schooled, the AJC blog I founded in 2004.
But some issues bother me so much and on so many different levels, I hardly know where to start to try to make an impact. The fading of recess is one such issue and high-stakes standardized testing is another.
I tried getting my arms around standardized testing in this op-ed for Get Schooled. It started as a letter to the state school board and superintendent, but after months of going back and forth trying to determine the appropriate public forum to read my letter, I gave up, emailed it to them, and published it.
I consider it a very abbreviated screed, focused only on a few of my testing peeves: lying to students about the high-stakes nature of the test, questionable grading practices, and the lack of accountability for testing companies. There are many other concerns I have, but these were some I had not seen discussed elsewhere. It's hard to let some points go unsaid, but it is better to focus on a few digestible points than try to cover too much. There will always be room in the blogosphere for another post about testing.