1. High-Stakes Inequity
It's unfair to hold all students to the same standards because wealthier schools generally provide a higher-quality education than schools in poorer areas.
Testing data confirms that African American and Hispanic students, poor students, and students with disabilities are disproportionately failing "high-stakes" standardized tests.
2. Lower Graduation Rates
Studies show that grade-by-grade testing and graduation exit exams increase drop-out rates. A student who must repeat a grade is more likely to drop out of school than equally poor-performing peers who are promoted to the next grade.
3. Higher Test Scores ≠ More Learning
When teachers prepare their students for standardized tests, they must take time away from teaching other curriculum.
4. A Shrinking Curriculum
Teaching subjects such as music, art, history, social studies and foreign languages are often sacrificed for subjects that are covered on standardized tests. In-depth learning takes a backseat to multiple-choice materials.
5. High-Stakes Disasters
Tests with flawed answer keys and other scoring errors can spell disaster for students, districts and states. Misidentifying students who have "failed" can unnecessarily cause emotional and financial damage. For example, one test error resulted in nearly 9,000 students in New York City being mistakenly assigned to summer school.
6. Teacher Stress
In a national study, seven out of 10 teachers reported feeling stressed out by standardized tests. Two out of three believed that test preparation took time from teaching important, non-tested topics.