Community book discussion to explore school 'testing charade'
If you are the parent or grandparent of school-age children, there’s an important book that the Heights Coalition for Public Education urges you to read. The book—The Testing Charade: Pretending to Make Schools Better, by Daniel Koretz—concerns a topic that affects the CH-UH community: the overwhelming intrusion of high-stakes standardized testing in the public schools.
The Coalition invites members of the community to discuss The Testing Charade on Wednesday, Feb. 6, and Wednesday, Feb. 13, 7–9 p.m., in the Wiley Middle School cafeteria. Relevant and important conversation is promised, as well as a few surprises.
Parents and teachers have been expressing the concern that frequent and intrusive standardized tests place undue stress on children. In addition, preparing for and administering the tests takes time away from the most important and rewarding part of school life—education.
Testing may be damaging schools and communities in broader ways, such as when the state of Ohio uses test scores as the rationale for taking over school districts in less affluent regions of the state.
Mac's Backs, at 1820 Coventry Road, is offering a 20-percent discount on The Testing Charade for those planning to participate in the discussion in February. To order the book, call Mac’s Backs at 216-321-2665, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or order online at www.macsbacks.com/.
The discussion will bring together many perspectives, including those of Reaching Heights, FutureHeights, CH-UH PTA, Northeast Ohio Friends of Public Education, CH-UH Board of Education, Notre Dame College, Cleveland State University Center for Urban Education, League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland, Cleveland Heights Teachers Union, and North Eastern Ohio Education Association.
Jan Resseger is a longtime advocate for public education, working to reduce standardized testing, increase awareness of educational opportunity gaps, and increase the public's role in local schools.