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20 Feb. 2011. “Performance of Each Student Group on the ABCs End-of-Course Tests.” 2009-2010. Education First NC School Report Cards. Web. 20 Feb. 2011.
Standardized tests are exams that are supposed to measure a child’s academic knowledge but have long been a controversial subject of discussion. Although it is one method to see how a child is performing, is it the best method? Standardized testing can be biased or unfair, inhibit both the teacher’s and the children’s creativity and flexibility, affect funding for schools, cause untested subjects to be eliminated from the curriculum, and cause anxiety for children and teachers. Standardized tests can also be biased or unfair because questions on these tests necessitate understanding and abilities that typically children from advantaged families have (Kohn, A, 2000). Children who live in poorer communities have a disadvantage because they may not have the tools available to them that are available to the more affluent areas.
Without those strong building blocks, students will continue to fall back and repeat the same material again and again. And so, testing and assessment come into play to make sure children are where they need to be. However, in early childhood settings testing is almost non-existent because of the stigma around testing. The current debate in our education system argues that testing is not a good measure of a child’s actual knowledge. Rather, assessment gives teachers a better picture of a student’s abilities and capabilities in the classroom.
A bad test result can ruin a students motive for education, and if this is done unnecessarily, this is a terrible thing. An unearned good result can leave a child who needs help to move on without understanding what they need to know. A common argument that advocators of standardized tes... ... middle of paper ... ...cceed. This can only be done when the right students are in the right classes. When you give the same standardized testing to kids that are on much different levels and are from many backgrounds, you get inaccurate information on the intelligence of the child and what they need to learn.
Critics of the No Child Left Behind Act say that there is immense pressure on school officials, teachers, students, and parents. That pressure to succeed creates a poor environment for learning—an environment of fear, rather than discovery. Such tests reward quick answers to superficial questions. They do not measure the ability to think deeply or creatively in any field. Their use encourages a narrowed curriculum, outdated methods of instruction, and harmful practices such as grade retention and tracking.