A few weeks ago, I received an email from Professor Dr. Jochen Krautz, a professor of art education in Germany, who is one of a growing number of European scholars who do not like the test-based accountability that is being enforced internationally by the OECD through the PISA examinations. He and colleagues are producing articles to argue against test-based accountability and for recognition that teachers are the experts in teaching. I look forward to posting more articles from scholars in other countries who recognize the absurdity of an international horse race for higher scores on standardized tests. The goal is not “real education,” he says, but the ability to answer the questions posed by unaccountable bureaucrats.


This is one of the articles he sent me: Professor Dr. Hans Peter Klein wrote “Quality Management by Marking Schemes Dumping.” It is translated from German to English, which causes an occasional surprising wording (like the title), but you will get the point if you read the 2 page article. It begins like this:


It has long been all over town: The methods of alleged “quality management” in education do not lead to greater knowledge and skills, rather they conceal the fact that students know less and are capable of less. Ever more beginners, particularly in the natural sciences, lack basic knowledge and skills to successfully take up and complete their studies. However, the kind of trouble caused by ministerial guidelines which teacher teams are facing and let out only behind closed doors, is something the public must know about.


How knowledge and skills develop as the basis of real education and how this can be achieved best during lessons, has been well-known for a long time. Why are teachers not given the freedom to take independent decisions how to organize their lessons according to their professional training? After all, they are the experts.