Just a few miles from our school, Governor Jerry Brown is expected to call tomorrow for less state testing. Here’s an excerpt from a Sacramento Bee story today:
Gov. Jerry Brown will call for less statewide testing and expanding classroom focus beyond math and English in his annual State of the State address tomorrow, according to his top education adviser.
Sue Burr, executive director of the State Board of Education, told hundreds of school finance officials today that Brown will seek to reduce student testing and push districts to focus on a broader array of subject areas. She spoke at an annual workshop produced by School Services of California, which advises districts on how to budget for the next school year.
“We think there’s way, way too much testing in our system right now,” Burr said. “Just as an example, a 10th grade student takes 15 hours’ worth of tests. So that sophomore is losing 15 hours of their instructional program.”
Burr said that while some testing is necessary for measuring schools, Brown will ask lawmakers to “take (hours) away from testing and give it back to instruction.”
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Fifteen hours of testing does seem a bit over the top, and it probably should be cut back. Returning those 15 hours to instruction, however, may not help much. Without knowing exactly what they’re doing in CA, it’s hard to judge, but perhaps the attitude to take is that every little bit helps. Most states’ education systems are riddled with problems, so attacking the issues one by one probably makes sense. Thanks for the insight!