By now, many Texans are familiar with the backlash against the over-testing of our students in public schools. Most of this backlash has focused on the amount of tests being given and the amount of time, energy and resources being spent on “teaching to the test” as opposed to our students mastering and retaining the information.
Another issue has just surfaced that has caused significant concern about our testing and accountability system. Of all places, this concern arose on craigslist.org. If you aren’t familiar with craigslist, it is an online classified advertising service where you can buy and sell almost anything. But, that’s not the troubling part.
On November 29, 2012, Pearson Testing ran an advertisement in Austin looking for people to help grade the written portion of the Texas standardized tests. The ad offers to pay college graduates $12/hour. The qualifications? According to the Craigslist ad, “Bachelor degree required – any field welcome.”
Prior to seeing this ad, we have heard concerns from across the state about the state’s standardized testing system, the rigidity of the state’s accountability system, and the quality of the people grading the written portion of the state’s test and the consistency of the results. Now we have a better idea why.
H/T: Diane Ravitch’s Blog
Pearson receives $750 million in contracts from just two states – Texas and Florida. Their philanthropic arm remains a major contributor to Jeb Bush’s foundation. Last December, Bush wrote an editorial in support of Pearson’s Texas STARR exams.