OPT OUT OF THE STATE TEST: The National Movement posts:
When the State Recovery Board cancelled Philadelphia’s teachers contract, it may have removed the last hurdle to a national opt out movement of standardized testing.
Up to now, teachers have only sporadically refused to administer these fill-in-the-bubble falsely objective, poorly written and cheaply graded tests. The reason: fear of losing employment.
However, now that is not an impediment. When teachers in the 8th largest public school district in the country are forced to accept take-it-or-leave-it terms, there is no longer safety in following the rules.
The Philadelphia decision shows that poor districts can be taken over just because they’re poor and somehow that justifies sweatshop conditions for the teachers and their students.
The main justification the data crunchers use to make this determination is students’ standardized test scores. Not being educators, themselves, they have no other tool to judge success or failure. They blithely ignore the fact that rich kids score higher and poor kids score lower.
Therefore, teachers would best serve their interests and the interests of their students by refusing to provide this data. Moreover, the country’s two largest teachers unions - NEA and AFT – have promised to defend teachers opting out of testing.
A wholesale movement of this kind beginning in poorer schools and spreading to the more affluent ones would force the corporate education reform machine to a halt. It would offer an opportunity for real reform – an attack on the roots of the problem: inequitable funding and abject student poverty.
The last straw has fallen. The revolution is about to begin.