It’s that time again in South Carolina public schools when we subject our teachers, students and administrators to the biggest fallacy in education — high stakes testing.
This is when we put all of our eggs in one basket and we forget that behind each test score is a face, personality and culture that schools and test scores will never truly measure.
I am in no way against accountability standards.
Let’s have accountability, but let’s hold our schools accountable for what they have control over.
Let’s properly fund our schools, not at the 2007 per pupil cost but at the 2015 level.
Let’s not give tax credits to private academies and home schoolers before we fully fund public education.
The curriculum has become the test in our South Carolina public schools.
From the first day of school until hours before the test, we teach, preach and worship those things and only those things that will be covered on “the big test.”
We have destroyed the creativity of our teachers and students, and we have replaced it with the mandates of one-size-fits-all.
Our teachers and administrators spend more time documenting the things they teach than teaching. Our legislators love the testing game. They can label students, schools and school systems based on one big criteria — the big test. They never bother to realize that behind those scores lie real human beings.
Let’s start holding our legislators to the same standards by which they measure our schools. Schools will lend them one of their flags that reads either excellent, good, average, below average or at-risk.
At the end of each legislative session they can hoist the appropriate flag that best qualifies their effectiveness for the legislative year.
No, governor, it’s not a great day in South Carolina when we give enormous tax credits to corporations, subject our students to high stakes testing and give tax cuts to the wealthy before we adequately fund public education.
It’s time to have a serious discussion about high stakes testing and put our dollars into more instruction and less testing. This will take courage and honesty, two qualities that are in short supply in Columbia.
Brooks P. Moore
Blue House Road