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[Susan notes: Augustine's piece is another piece of corporate compost distributed nationally. Across the country, Rog Lucido rebutted in the Fresno Bee.
http://www.susanohanian.org/show_letter.php?id=1589]

Published in Washington Post
08/09/2013

To the editor

Regarding Norman R. Augustine's Aug. 2 Washington Forum column, A test we can't afford to skip:



The burgeoning movement against high-stakes testing recognizes that the United States cannot test and punish its way to better schools. The problem is not a failure to appreciate the value of standardized exams but damage to educational quality.



Mr. Augustine conflated high "standards" with the low-quality multiple-choice tests used to measure them. He ignored how testing has taken over many classrooms, undermining learning, school climate and student engagement. Protesters have good reasons for skepticism about the tests being developed to measure Common Core State Standards. These primarily multiple-choice exams will add to the testing tsunami without significantly improving assessment quality.



A limited amount of standardized testing used appropriately has a place. There are, however, far better ways to assess student learning and school quality.



The writer is a policy analyst for the National Center for Fair and Open Testing.

Lisa Guisbond


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