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Jim Arnold, former superintendent of schools in Pelham, Georgia, explains why he encouraged his grandsons and their parents to opt out.
“Just imagine the millions of dollars spent on standardized test development, scoring, actual testing, test training and test security that could be spent to hire new teachers, lower class sizes, restore art and music and elective classes, buy new school technology, books, materials, end furlough days or – gasp – give teachers a raise.
“Imagine an end to the silly insistence that standardized testing is the only way to hold teachers and schools accountable.
“Imagine the return of the authority of the classroom teacher to actually teach their students rather than follow a scripted test-centric routine designed not to improve teaching and learning but to improve test scores.
“Just imagine schools focused on taking students where they are educationally and socially and concentrating on teaching and learning rather than on how they test.
“Just imagine students being judged by the classroom work they do rather than by a score on a standardized test.
“Just imagine your kid’s school being judged by the parents, teachers and community members on their effectiveness rather than some made-up metric based on the junk science of standardized testing.
“Just imagine teachers being judged by their administrators and mentored by other teachers to help them learn how to be more effective in what they do rather than being evaluated by student test scores — often of students they don’t even teach by a method condemned by the American Statistical Association?
“Just imagine. That’s why we’re opting our boys out.”