No Child Left Behind?

Try It

Share this video with teachers and others to focus on the damage done by our current system’s reliance on high-stakes (often punitive) standardized testing as a measure of student proficiency. 

Discuss It

  • How has the high-stakes focus on standardized test scores affected your teaching? Student learning?
  • How would you teach differently in a world without high-stakes testing? 
  • If a student works hard preparing for these tests, what essential competencies have they developed?
  • Expensive test-prep tutors offer two priority tips to get a big boost in your scores. Never think creatively, and skip any problem that takes time to figure out.  What’s wrong with this picture?
  • What small steps might be paths to better assessments?


Go Deeper

As Buckminster Fuller observed, “You never change things by fighting against the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete.”  Can you start piloting (at the school, district, or state level) an alternative assessment framework that initially complements existing measures, but over time replaces them? Check out the book What School Could Be to learn what the state of New Hampshire accomplished.