Thursday, November 30, 2006

David Goldstein takes on the WASL

While we're on a WASL kick, here are Goldy's unfiltered thoughts on Washington's high-stakes test:
The point is, the one thing these standardized tests are truly capable of evaluating is the ability of the student to take these standardized tests. They do not necessarily test the student’s grasp on the material, and they do not necessarily predict the student’s future performance in college or the real world. Hell… look at me: according to the SATs I’m a fucking genius, yet here I am blogging for free while my thermostat’s set to 58 and I’m struggling to pay my mortgage. How smart is that?

So when I read all these editorials and columns lamenting our student’s poor performance on the WASL, it absolutely infuriates me that nobody ever questions the performance of the WASL. I mean, did it ever occur to anybody that when it comes to measuring the ability of a typical high school student to grasp and apply a body of knowledge, that perhaps the WASL sucks? Is it so outside the realm of possibility to even consider the notion that the very same educators who are constantly being accused of failing to teach our children might also have devised a crappy means of measuring a student’s progress?
Actually, David, you're not alone--there are a lot of people who question the WASL. They're just not named Bergeson or Gregoire, and they're too busy teaching to the test as though their jobs depended on it. Soon they will.


Anonymous said...

If your thermostat is set to 58 and you are struggling to pay your mortgage, then maybe you are too stupid to weigh in on the WASL debate.

Anonymous said...

To mangle Shakespeare, "The course of satire never did run smooth."