Dialogue that measures up

What better content for a blog titled “Living in Dialogue” than a meaty interview? TLN Forum member Anthony Cody, who blogs weekly for Teacher Magazine, has a new post in which he shares some fascinating dialogue with Harvard prof Daniel Koretz, author of Measuring Up: What Educational Testing Really Tells Us.

Be sure to stop by and read Koretz’s important answers to these questions posed by Cody:

1. What is the problem with teaching to the test? If the tests and standards are sound, what is the problem?

2. Why shouldn’t you use test scores to tell which schools are doing better than others?

3. What do you think about the Value Added Methods gaining prominence as means of measuring the contribution of individual teachers to student achievement?

4. In California, we have a high school exit exam that all students, including those with special needs, must pass to gain their diploma. Last year 46% of special needs students failed this test. The State Superintendent said: “Special-education students deserve a diploma that has real value and real meaning.” What would you say?

5. Your book suggests we should approach setting goals “that reflect realistic and practical expectations for improvement.” Do you have suggestions as to how educators and policymakers might approach this process?

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