Ban Unnecessary Standardized Testing in Delaware

Ban Unnecessary Standardized Testing in Delaware

162 have signed. Let’s get to 200!
Petition to

Why this petition matters

Started by nishon y

Standardized testing is a method many schools use to measure the skills students learn in schools. While the information may be beneficial to the school boards, oftentimes it is extremely stressful for both students and teachers. Also, most of the tests aren't accurate measures of what students have been learning in schools. Topics tend to be obscure topics, readings, and problems that students haven't been prepared for. The tests also take away valuable lesson times from teachers, leaving less time for students to learn. Instead of using students' and teachers' valuable time, Delaware should only follow federal requirements and not add unnecessary extra tests.

Standardized testing is a common thing in many classrooms ranging from grades 3-11 that is used as a tool to collect data about different schools and measure the success of different schools by using a one-size-fits-all approach despite the different cultural conventions, troubled home lives, and learning deficiencies. Standardized testing causes many problems for students. The testing methods used by these tests place importance on the core subjects and devalue the importance of the arts. Standardized testing takes away from learning that should be happening in the classroom and encourages teachers to take time away from learning. Teachers are encouraged to use different methods such as memorization and drilling tactics to increase performance on these tests due to administration teams bribing teachers with raises for greater test scores, and threatening them with termination if their students perform poorly on the tests. High-stakes testing also undermines the importance of topics not covered in the testing curriculum and causes them to remain the same and possibly deteriorate.

Test anxiety is a prominent issue for many students across the nation and with teen anxiety rates being at an all-time high, students tend to perform worse on these tests than normal which causes a misrepresentation in understanding the growth and development of student knowledge. Testing amid the pandemic has caused a huge misuse of resources. Millions of students are tested yearly and to test these students requires a lot of funding which could be going towards more important things during the pandemic. In addition, schools that are in lower-class environments and do not have access to the same resources as more affluent schools, are at a disadvantage for testing and do not receive the same resources which makes standardized testing extremely unfair. Decades of research and studies also show that students of color are shown extreme bias in testing environments from early childhood through the rest of their school lives.

According to a survey conducted by the National Education Association, around 70% of teachers believe that the state tests being administered currently to students are developmentally inappropriate. Teachers are extremely important in educational environments and their opinions on the matter are valuable and should be taken into consideration when finding ways of testing student growth and knowledge. A big purpose meant to be served by state testing is to predict the college success students will have and a study conducted by two authors at the University of Chicago found that GPAs are 5x stronger predictors of college success in comparison to their ACT scores. Despite the recent hyper fixation and the government placing importance on standardized testing, our scores in different subjects overall have actually dropped in recent years. US students dropped from being ranked 18th in the world in math in 2000, to 40th in 2015, from 14th to 25th in science, and 15th to 24th in reading.

Standardized testing is a nationwide test that is heavily defended by many around the country and will require a hard fight to minimize or remove from schools entirely. A law banning or minimizing the number of state tests administered to students would be a great solution to the problem. Delaware allowed opting out of state testing in 2015 however many students have parents that do not know of the negative effects of state testing and all testing should be minimalized or banned for all students. Many other states do not allow students to opt-out of state testing and the option should be nationwide.

Excessive statewide testing should be banned completely due to its detrimental impact on the learning environment.

162 have signed. Let’s get to 200!