The Shortcomings of Standardized Testing

1636 Words Jun 18th, 2018 7 Pages
Since the U.S. Congress passed the No Child Left Behind program, standardized testing has become the norm for American schools. Under this system, each child attending a school is required to take a standardized test at specific grade points to assess their level of comprehension. Parents, scholars and all stakeholders involved take part in constant discussions over its effectiveness in evaluating students’ comprehension, teachers’ competency and the effects of the test on the education system. Though these tests were put in place to create equality, experts note that they have created more inequality in the classroom. In efforts to explore this issue further, this essay reviews two articles on standardized testing. This essay reviews the …show more content…
However, this fails to take into account different environments and their influence on the students’ performances. As a result, standardized tests should be specialized to the environment of the learners and the educators.
According to Ravitch’s article, she changed her mind on the effectiveness of standardized tests four years after advocating for its use in the public education system. The change came after she evaluated its outcome on the American education system. The No Child Left Behind Act was enacted in 2001 to reinforce the statutes of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. The act stipulated that all states in the union must formulate assessment methods that would be used to evaluate a student’s understanding of basic concepts. In order for the federal government to allocate budgetary funding to any state for education purposes, the states must assess all students at specific points of their education. Though the act does not necessarily specify a national standard that each state should attain, each state must set in place its own standards. According to Birman, et al., (12) the act increased the federal government’s influence on the curriculum, teachers’ qualification and funding changes. Birdman et al. assert that the act illuminated the role of educators on the students’ performance. Ravitch seems to share the same sentiments; she states that she never thought the test would be used a measure of teachers’ performance or a tool to close