Education

Times Offers Latest National Test Proposal for Congress to Ignore

November 29, 2007 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

During the 1990s, two presidents proposed national tests. Congress rejected both. A Republican Congress brushed back a proposal by a Democratic president, just as a Democratic Congress killed a plan by a Republican president. Neither plan ever had much chance of passing. (Read this and this in the Education Week archives.)

That’s the main reason why NCLB gave states the authority to set their own definitions of proficiency based on the tests they design. If President Bush or the law’s congressional sponsors tried to nationalize testing, the idea would have flopped, which would have endangered the bill.

Now momentum appears to be building for the idea of creating national tests. The latest endorsement comes in a New York Times editorial.

“Many states have gamed the system—and misled voters—devising weak tests, setting low passing scores or changing tests from year to year to prevent accurate comparisons over time,” the editorial in Monday’s paper says. “The charade will continue, and children will continue to be shortchanged, until the country develops a rigorous national test keyed to national standards.”

The Times joins the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, the Council of Great City Schools, and Aspen Institute’s Commission on NCLB in advocating national tests. Diane Ravitch likes the Times’ editorial, but her blogging foil, Deborah Meier, calls the idea “patently absurd.”

What’s ultimately important is where Congress and the president stand. So far, I haven’t seen much enthusiasm for national testing.

A version of this news article first appeared in the NCLB: Act II blog.

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Start Strong With Solid SEL Implementation: Success Strategies for the New School Year
Join Satchel Pulse to learn why implementing a solid SEL program at the beginning of the year will deliver maximum impact to your students.
Content provided by Satchel Pulse
Teaching Live Online Discussion Seat at the Table: How Can We Help Students Feel Connected to School?
Get strategies for your struggles with student engagement. Bring questions for our expert panel. Help students recover the joy of learning.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Science Webinar
Real-World Problem Solving: How Invention Education Drives Student Learning
Hear from student inventors and K-12 teachers about how invention education enhances learning, opens minds, and preps students for the future.
Content provided by The Lemelson Foundation

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated: June 8, 2022
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: June 1, 2022
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: May 11, 2022
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education Briefly Stated: April 27, 2022
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read