Students, parents, educators score big win against mismatched standardized test


by Brian Washington

A mismatched standardized test administered in Washington state that sparked local boycotts involving educators, parents, and students and intensified the national spotlight on the need for high quality assessments is no longer mandatory in Seattle-area high schools after this spring.

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Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Jose Banda announced the district’s decision regarding the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) test yesterday in a letter to school administrators.

In the letter, Banda states high schools can decide not to administer the test.

High schools may opt out of MAP in 2013-14, but must provide evidence of a way to assess and monitor progress of students who are below standard in math and reading. In addition, the high school must follow their typical school-level decision-making process (which might include a school committee or staff vote).

Educators — including those at Garfield High School in Seattle, where the boycott movement began — are calling the news a victory.

Garfield High School educator Jesse Hagopian
Garfield High School educator Jesse Hagopian

“Finally, educators voices have been acknowledged,” said Garfield history teacher Jesse Hagopian to a local blogger.  “This is a great moment in the movement for quality assessment.”

The teachers at Garfield are overwhelmed with joy.  I think this is a real vindication of the movement that was started at Garfield High School by teachers but was quickly joined by parents and students at our school, and around the city, and really around the country.

To read more about the victory regarding MAP, click here.

To rate your state’s assessments to help administrators and lawmakers make informed decisions on standardized testing, click here.

Reader Comments

  1. Congratulations to the teachers, students, parents and community members of Seattle on this accomplishment. I hope this sparks more of us around the nation to take similar action.

  2. In the U S Virgin Islands,our students are being forced to compete with states schools with very little regard for the cultural differences.We must use the standardized tests and assessments,using stateside textbooks that have little or no mention of the Virgin Islands.They’re forced to use stateside Geography & Social Studies books that don’t even contain maps,nor information about these islands or the Caribbean. We want to be given a fair chance to receive the same awards and recognition as Public Schools in the United States.

  3. Great News! Let this be the beginning of a string of similar victories all over the country. it is time to take public education back from the corporate reformers and their agenda.

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