As a kid myself, you may think that writing a post like this would just be saying that I just don’t want to do these tests themselves, because of them being hard. Actually, no. There is no fresher opinion on this topic than a child’s, because we are the people who are actually experiencing it. Maybe it is so that I don’t want to do this test itself, because I have seen practice tutorials and I found that these tests are actually hard. Whatever it takes, I’ll get my voice heard about this, and I’ll let the people really know what we are experiencing. And it has sparked a whole lot of controversy, especially where I live, in New Jersey.
What’s worse, some (not my own) schools have been ordered to punish the students who refuse to participate in the testing. How outrageous! Knowing that 10% of what you do overall goes to what the teacher will be getting paid, knowing that the fate of their career kind of depends on what you get right is a scary thought. One wrong move on there, we are always told, and they’ll call the state on you! Who really should be taking the blame is not the teachers, but the program itself. Teachers have no influence on what we do and learn nowadays. Everything we learn is controlled by the same people who put this test together. And I don’t care that they spent millions piecing this thing together. It is worth much less than that. What’s more, The Department of Education advised many school districts to discipline the students who refused the test, because it is mandatory. Which is false. We do not need this.
Us children are NOT for profit!!!
Everyone misses the bigger picture here; these students are in this school because people are getting paid to do it. When new education techniques are being developed, everyone wants to try it out, and that is why we have the tests themselves. And the people who are behind the tests, are getting paid millions and millions of dollars for the children to slave away behind their desks for countless hours doing their dirty work. They have no right to tell us we have to take these tests.
What’s more, I read on an article that the people behind it are trying to steer off topic from the controversy about the students opting out, and the reason why they are, to the benefit of the tests themselves. “The PARCC exams, unlike anything else we have ever done in the state, will provide much more robust information about your child’s education, how the schools can help them, how you as a parent can help them,” Education Commissioner David Hespe said. Whatever! It will provide the children this information, while the children just stand powerless trying to wrap their own minds about what we are doing here. We don’t know what we’re doing, and that doesn’t matter to them, it only does matter that they know what they’re doing, which they don’t, which links back up to why I’m writing this right now. I’ve seen the practice tests, and believe me when I say this, this shouldn’t be happening. The people who design these tests are throwing in information that haven’t been included from what we have already learned. This may be a bad example, but like you just learn a language, then something comes up and they decide to change the whole entire language completely. And now, some schools are offering the choice to opt out of the testing, but there is still one fear with that option..
That children will just have to “sit and stare” at the wall, while the other children take the test. It’s sad how many children have said that they would rather sit and stare at a wall than be judged in this colossal way. They say it has no effect on grades, which probably is true, but even though it has no effect on grades it does effect what they are teaching. Who knows, maybe a kid is below average, and they’ll decide to put them in a tutoring program because of the ‘score’ they got on the test. Maybe they’re above average, then they’ll put them in a special program that teaches them much more complex and raise their standards. They have the power to change our lives in a massive way. Even though it doesn’t have an effect on our grade, it can decide what’s coming in the future for us, and we should be the ones able to decide what we have coming for us.
This may be the fourth paragraph I’ve started by saying “What’s more,” but what’s more, some states like New Jersey have no idea what to do, or no guidance, of what to do once a kid decides to opt out. “In most cases, it is unplowed ground,” Bob Schaeffer said.
Bob Schaeffer (whoever you are), heck yeah you’re right. This whole thing is unplowed ground. Whatever is happening between the program and the schools isn’t good, but to people with more power of this than us aren’t the ones who have to take the test itself. No, they have the answer key.
This may seem odd since I wrote this controversial post, but I am not one of the thousands of other students to opt out from the test. Of course I’d like to, but I have a couple of weeks left before I really have to worry about it. Before that awful week comes, I just want you to share my story with this, try to spread the word about the PARCC testing, and about how smart kids really are. We’re better than PARCC, all of us.