Q: Is it possible to ensure educational accountability without giving standardized tests?
A: Not only is it possible, it is necessary.
In fact, we will never have accountability while we continue giving standardized tests.
This is the irony of modern education policy.
High stakes testing is seen as the only tool that can ensure schools operate correctly when in reality it is the very thing that blocks true responsibility.
Pundits and policymakers cry crocodile tears as they draw up elaborate ways to punish teachers and students for low test scores. Meanwhile they ignore some of the most basic facts about how education works.
FACT: Students and teachers are not the only factors.
FACT: Students and teachers don’t decide how much funding their schools get.
FACT: Students and teachers don’t get to decide education policy.
FACT: An education system is made up of a complex interplay of several interconnected factors
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