SBOE solicits your input on testing and accountability through online survey

SBOE logoThe State Board of Education (SBOE) is inviting stakeholders to share input on the state’s accountability systems and assessments for students. The board is hosting an online public survey, which will be open through June 30. Access the English survey here and the Spanish version here. Results will be shared at the SBOE’s July 2016 meeting.

Donna Bahorich

Donna Bahorich

The survey relates to an effort by SBOE members to conduct recent meetings around the state, referred to as Community Conversations, at which members of the public, educators, and parents could share feedback on testing and accountability. To view comments gathered at the SBOE’s recent Community Conversations events, click here.

In a press release from the Texas Education Agency today, SBOE Chairwoman Donna Bahorich said, “I felt it was also important for board members to have in-depth discussions to learn what educators, parents, business people and others want from these two high profile programs.”

SBOE’s findings will also be shared with the Texas Commission on Next Generation Assessments and Accountability, which is tasked this year with making recommendations to the 85th Legislature for changes to the state’s testing and accountability systems. Visit TEA’s website for more information about the commission.

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15 thoughts on “SBOE solicits your input on testing and accountability through online survey

  1. Danielle toma

    If you need to test students as a grade for teachers do it as a lottery…a handful of students in each classroom are pulled for the test…doesn’t need every child every time…if it’s to see what the student is learning, I’m sorry I don’t remember everything I’ve learned in history either, should be based on current year; last…not every student is going to pass…it shouldn’t determine if the graduate…if they are passing class then let them graduate; if they are creative and artistic and going towards theater teacher I highly doubt they will need all the math that is shoved down their throats and that they don’t understand because they struggle with simple number sense…with all the testing and requirements our students are still behind but not because they aren’t tested enough, because you don’t let teachers teach and you don’t let students be students. You put such pressure on them that they have anxiety over this test. It’s time to change the system! So what if other states are doing it…if the law requires no child is left behind this test does not in anyway ensure our students are ahead. They are left behind, so far behind and then they get frustrated and feel they can’t do it…then they lose hope…is that what we are trying to do? Some were just not meant to excel in every area taught….so acknowledge their strengths…and don’t punish them for their failures…

    1. Monty Exter

      You are certainly not alone in your thinking on how the test affects kids, Danielle. I hope you expressed those thoughts in the Chairwoman’s survey. As far as using sampling instead of testing every child every year, there are a significant number of Texas policy makers who would likely support such a measure, unfortunately its not allowed under federal law, even after the rewrite of ESEA.

  2. Melissa Woody

    As a ELAR teacher for the past 18 years I can tell you that students stress way too much over a test that measures little. And why? Education should not put under stress on children. Even at the primary level, students have lost recess time to better prep for a test when we know that children learn tons through play

  3. Donna McIntyre

    As a classroom teacher, reading specialist, and dyslexia teacher for 26 years, I watched the quality of education deteriorate as the emphasis on testing became the priority. Children do not develop or learn to a regiment designed by a test. They learn at their own pace and when pushed to a level before they are ready, failure is the result.
    Expecting children to read in kindergarten before they have a foundation of the reading process results in the system breaking down. The increase in remedial reading required is proof of this.
    Spending a school year preparing children for a test is not beneficial to the children or the educators. The love of learning is lost for the child and the love of teaching is lost for the teacher. How does the stress and anxiety of possible failure caused by the tests promote learning?
    Every school and district is composed of different populations. To put the same grading criteria on a school that is composed of 90% minority, many of whom are non English speakers, as a school that is composed mostly of professional families with higher level educations is unfair.
    It is time for Texas Education to get back letting teachers do what they do best, teaching to the whole child and not a state written test.

      1. Pamela Hearne

        These mandatory testing are making teachers and especially children too stressed out and are not proving to be a true indicator of a students progress or lack thereof. It’s time the state board started listening to classroom teachers and parents!!!!

    1. Barbara

      My goodness, that is very “old school”, and I love it. I too have been in education for over a decade, and I can honestly say that all the “glitz and glam” with testing and technology has not been and won’t be the what moves our students forward. They need time to be kids and play, time to work face-to-face with each other, time away from technology, but most important of all, they need time to acquire basic foundation information in any subject matter before they go tearing off on a “project based learning” assignment. Every moment in school can’t be “fun”. What’s fun for me may not be fun for you. It’s the same with the kids. Yes, we do need to engage them, but they must learn, starting at an earlier age, that they too must share in that engagement. In a perfect world, the teacher would be trusted to know what is best for their students, not the politicians, and especially, not those who have never stepped inside the classroom to actually teach. Have any of them ever taken an EOC?

  4. Kathy D'Amico

    I teach ESL at the high school level. I am also a case manager for every English Language Learner on our campus. Some kids are not ready to take these tests. Just getting them to speak English is a huge accomplishment. This year I had two students who did not graduate because of these tests. You talk about heart breaking. There is NOTHING like having a student think he is going to graduate and then learning that he is not. There is NOTHING like having an 18 year old young man in tears leaning against the lockers saying to you, “What can be done?” I will never forget that. They don’t deserve this. No kid does. They passed all of their classes inspite of many obstacles along the way, but they still can’t walk the stage. This test is a cancer to all in public education.

  5. Linda Fisher

    There are too many children that are not getting the foundation needed to able to read , write in Kindergarten and then as they move up in grades they just get further behind. We tend to push kids too match to be ready for this test that they must take. All it seems to do is cause anxiety for most of the kids. We need to just go back to teaching and letting the kids learn so that they can be successful in all that they strive to do. If you look at the students in college who are preparing to get a teaching degree , I think you will see that there are not very many. Teachers are leaving the field of teaching due to the testing they are required to teach. The love of teaching a child and seeing that child understand the concept of that objective has been lost. We need to do away with the Starr and let each school district submit their own test to determine if the child is ready to go on to next grade level. After all the teacher and school administrators are the ones that see these children day in and day out. I think they would know what is best and not someone who has never been in a classroom or much else a teacher , who is programming a test for them.

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  7. Laurie McDaniel

    This survey was a waste of my time. The way the questions were constructed, there was no way I could agree with any. When it asks framed against “this was successful because” of A, B, C, D or none of the above, any answer is stating that it was successful. There is nothing successful about these tests other than they opened up a job market for canned curriculum and the “next great thing” and caused a shift that may not ever be recovered from in public education. They have also successfully created a whole extra department in public school bureaucracy. They are lining the pockets of corporations, lobbyists and politicians by robbing classrooms of quality materials, enriched learning and teachers, who actually care about education as more than bubbling in the right answer. They are wasting the talents of some of the most brilliant minds in the world. These teachers must be brilliant to have inspired Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Ben Carson and many others. I am sick to death of being represented by people that don’t know what they are doing and have nothing better to do than think up new experiments. Get politics out of my classroom. The lottery system for testing seems like something that might have potential.

  8. Anthony L. Fourman

    When we took out recess, playing with blocks, finger painting, and play doh our kids lost their base to build scaffolds upon. A child who is in 6th grade math and is lucky to do 1st grade math is a child who is lost and cannot gain ground.

    Testing is NOT helping these children. As I have read time and time again in just these blogs and I have said it time and time again: “Let us teach.”

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