Article

Race and the Standardized Testing Wars
By Kate Taylor
New York Times (4/23/16)

1171 Excerpt

...But some experts say that, because testing provides an incomplete picture of the problems at low-performing schools, it can lead to policies that worsen those problems rather than ameliorate them. Warren Simmons, a senior fellow at the Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University, said test scores can’t offer policy makers much guidance in the absence of qualitative assessments — of the curriculum, of teacher training, of the support a school is receiving from the district and state.

“Student testing is like using a thermometer to try to diagnose what kind of cancer an individual has,” Mr. Simmons said.

He said he believed that was why there was growing testing fatigue in low-income communities. Test scores can reveal that something is wrong at a school, but not what is wrong or how it can be fixed.

“I think what people are understanding is we don’t need another round of tests to tell us that schools are struggling,” he said.