It seems that some of our legislators have forgotten how strenuous the testing experience can be on a child. The state’s decision to implement a test that they were not prepared for will ultimately cause our students to suffer.
According to state officials, technical issues seem to be the main culprit when the tests were first administered in March. Despite the rhetoric coming from Tallahassee claiming that these technical issues have been resolved, testing had to be suspended yet again because of server complications. The largest issue has involved the computer-testing portion of the state exam.
As educators, we cannot focus only on the computer glitches and overlook the effects this has on our children and schools. How do we accurately measure those students who didn’t have access to a computer at home? Or what about the schools that had a limited amount of computers for our students to test on? We must remind ourselves that this test directly affects children’s lives in monumental ways. I continue to believe that high stakes testing is punitive, and this premature roll-out of the Florida Standards Assessments caused an additional burden on an already-taxing experience for our students. While I do support testing students, I do not support the state holding them accountable for a flawed testing experience.
Our community has been too silent on behalf of students. Where is the outcry? If we stand by in silence, we do an injustice to our children and our future.
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Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall, member, District 2, Miami-Dade County School Board