Orwell Award Announcement SusanOhanian.Org Home

[Susan notes: Good, strong letter.]

Published in New York Times

To the editor

Re The Trouble With Testing Mania (editorial, July 14):

The country's fixation on high-stakes testing is a failure. The United States made faster progress toward improving academic achievement and closing gaps among racial groups before No Child Left Behind than since it was enacted.

Of course we need better student and school assessment systems. But the highly touted Common Core exams are not a significant improvement. Contrary to the promises of promoters, they will remain largely multiple choice. There will be even more tests in more grades. Heavy reliance on scores to make educational decisions will continue. Districts will have to spend billions for computers to administer the new exams.

America's children, classrooms and communities deserve better. High-stakes testing should be replaced with educationally sound alternatives, like those used in Finland and by the New York Performance Standards Consortium. To encourage adoption, there must be a moratorium on Common Core exam consequences. That will protect educational quality and equity from more testing harm.

Monty Neill, Executive Director, FairTest

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of education issues vital to a democracy. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.