Education

L.A. Teachers Boycott Testing

By Stephen Sawchuk — January 28, 2009 1 min read

There’s a lot of important teacher activity in Los Angeles these days. Don’t miss this story about the local teachers’ union threatening to boycott the district’s use of “interim,” or periodic assessments. But both The Los Angeles Times and the district attribute an increase in student achievement to the tests.

There are lot of issues to tease out here, and without knowing more about how these assessments operate, it’s hard to comment on them. On the one hand, I can understand how frustrating it must be for teachers to give these tests if they’re not well timed to what’s being covered in class, and the article notes that that’s been a problem. On the other hand, I can’t help but wonder if the union is overestimating teachers’ own ability to create and score formative assessments. As any teacher from Nebraska can tell you, that can be incredibly time-consuming and difficult to do, even with training.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Teacher Beat blog.