RE: Equity in Educational Assessment

Date: Fri Mar 03 2000 - 10:41:44 EST


The numbers you cite look familiar in a lot of states--and for probably
similar reasons. The concern I have in not necessarily the standards
themselves which, in this state, seem to be relatively neutral. What is
the concern is that the curricula is not aligned to the standards in many
schools; that the same students who do not do well on norm-referenced tests
do not do well on the performance based tests--and for many of the same
reasons. Too many of the students' needs are not included in classroom
practices--from learning styles, curriculum content, teacher interactions,
teacher expectations, and other equity related issues. Simply to have
"high standards" without the supporting instructional and curricula
strategies is to continue to patterns we have seen. The development and
dissemination of those strategies require time and money--and a commitment
by policy makers that standards are for all students, not just those who
are able to meet them by accident of birth to the "right kind of parents".

You are correct that standards are not going to go away, and the stakes for
meeting the standards are becoming increasingly higher and more
politicized. The initial intent of standards as a way of increasing the
accountability of schools for students and to insure that ALL students
leave the K-12 educational system with all they need to succeed in the
world of work and school was admirable. That intent seems has been lost in
the world of political and social agendas rather that looking at how we can
make that happen.
Kathleen Rigsby <>

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