And in another case of the bubble tests being the tail that wags the entire educational dog, we see that one of the nation’s largest school districts – Los Angeles Unified – wants to start school earlier next year.
Not add more days of school, mind you. (Of course not. That would cost money and perhaps even add value to a child’s learning life.) Nope… they want to start earlier to “give students more time to prepare for the tests.”
That’s not a direct quote. Here’s the direct quote…
“The Los Angeles Unified School District hails the idea as a step forward academically, arguing that students would be better prepared for exams.”
It’s that blatant.
Clearly, good widgets do well on good one-size-fits-all bubble tests and bad widgets do poorly on one-size-fits-all bubble tests so – just as clearly, we need to start concentrating on the bubble tests earlier next year as they are, after all, the entire raison d’etre for public education’s entire existence.
It also goes to show how little the time is valued by our schools after bubble test season is over. (I’ve blogged about this before, about how once testing season passes the entire school shifts into “bide-our-time til summer” mode because clearly, once the bubbles have passed, so has the need to “really teach”.)
Why don’t we just let the bubble test makers decide the school calendar and put this baby to rest once and for all? They could schedule our tests, they could schedule our pre-tests, they can schedule our practice tests, our warm-up tests, and our make-up tests.
And anything that’s left over, will just be a furlough day. After all, if we are not preparing kids for the tests, how in the world can it be said that we are really teaching.
Because if it’s not tested, why would we be teaching it anyway?
This will all save us time, money and energy. Since nothing else but the bubble tests matter, why are we even bothering to pretend that anything other than the bubble tests do matter.
Of course, once we parse the data, we’ll know who to keep, who to fire, which kid to shame and which kid to put on the cover of the school district’s newsletter.
It’s a simple solution really. I have no idea why it’s taken them so long to figure it out.