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[Susan notes: ]

Published in Christian Science Monitor
07/19/2004

To the editor



Mr. Evers and Mr. Walberg missed the true objection to holding schools accountable based on student test scores. Student test scores measure what a student has learned. These scores do not and cannot measure where and from whence the student learned information.



Students learn from their entire environment. The home is most often the primary environment for children in the US. This is where the larger portion of a child's time is spent growing up. When this environment is apathetic toward education and sometimes anti-education, what goes on in the classroom will have little to no positive effect on a student's learning progress.



If you want to put schools to the test then you must test the schools - not just the students in the schools. To test only the students and hold schools solely accountable for the results will determine which schools will fail and which will pass almost without looking at the curriculum and teaching methods applied.



John Benage


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