"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, May 31, 2007

CTB/McGraw-Hill Scores Big In NYC

If you thought you had gone insane when you heard the Decider announce his plan in 2001 to test children in grades 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8, then hold onto your straightjacket. New York City has just announced that a new contract has been awarded to Bush family friends so that children in grades 3 through 8 will now be tested five (5) times each year (at a cost of $16,000,000 a year) to get ready for the state test that will then determine if they pass to the next grade or if their school will stay open. Oh yes, don't forget that students in grades 9-12 will be tested 4 times a year.

Is this what Spellings meant this week when she said that NCLB was working? Working to enrich friends in the education-industrial complex and to crush public education? From the NY Times:
Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein announced yesterday that the city school system would spend $80 million over five years on a battery of new standardized tests to begin this fall for most of New York City’s 1.1 million public school students.

The contract awarded to the testing giant CTB/McGraw-Hill will involve a significant expansion of exams, known as periodic tests, which monitor students’ progress and are supposed to help predict how students will perform in the annual state exams. Mr. Klein’s announcement immediately rekindled the debate over whether such testing is emphasized too much or is even a useful tool for teachers.

Pupils in Grades 3 through 8 will be tested five times a year in both reading and math, instead of three times as they are now. High school students, for the first time, will be tested four times a year in each subject. In the next few years, the tests will expand to include science and social studies. . . .

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