In surveys, black and Hispanic parents show strong support for high-stakes tests that educationists condemn as “racist,” writes Jonathan Zimmerman, an education professor, in the Christian Science Monitor. “Ed-School Gospel” preaches that schools should “reflect student interests, not the sterile demands of “the curriculum”; they should employ a wide variety of classroom materials, not just the district-approved textbook; they should promote group learning and cooperation; and they should evaluate each student based on her or his own progress, not on district or statewide norms.” Standardized testing works against these goals, Zimmerman writes.
. . . I also worry that the Ed-School Gospel blinds us to the concerns of American racial minorities, who simply don’t see the world the way we do. They want classrooms that stress discipline, that follow a strict curriculum, and that help children succeed on – gasp! – standardized tests.
Especially if students live in chaotic or dangerous home environments, minority parents argue, they need the order and structure of a traditional school.
. . . (Education professors) can no longer dismiss high-stakes testing as “racist” when so many racial minorities want it.
Unfortunately, we also have a rich tradition of ignoring popular sentiment.
Lately, I’ve been reading a lot of “conservative” education commentaries by people I consider liberals.