USED: Recycled Empty Course Change on Testing


Remember that theoretical problem where someone keeps moving half the distance to a point, and how that means they’ll never actually get there? Well, today Arne Duncan once again moved half the distance to the point at which he will someday theoretically accept responsibility for the administrations failed education policies and then actually do something about them.

Duncan issued a statement about testing, and I’d like to be excited that he almost admitted culpability in the Great Testing Circus while stating some actual policy changes to address the problem. But he didn’t get there, and I’ve seen the Duncan “I’ll Kind of Say the Right Thing Almost and Then Go On Acting As If I Haven’t Said Anything At All” show far too many times.

So what did Duncan actually say, according to the New York Times?

“It’s important that we’re all honest with ourselves,” he continued. “At the federal, state and local level, we have all supported policies that have contributed to the problem in implementation. We can and will work with states, districts and educators to help solve it.”

Get that? It’s a “problem in implementation.” It’s not a policy that’s Just Plain Wrong. It’s not a flat out mistake to demand that all states make Big Standardized Test results part of teacher evaluation or of rating and ranking schools. It’s not educational malpractice to use the force of law-ish regulations to force states to use these unproven BS Tests.

No, it’s just a “problem in implementation.” The policy of using tests to measure, evaluate and rank everything in education– that’s still great policy, apparently. Read more>>