Charlotte Higuchi, a third- and fourth-grade teacher at Farmdale Elementary School in Los Angeles, California, discusses the problems inherent in standardized testing. Excerpted from the video series Schools That Work: The Research Advantage, videoconference #4, Alternatives for Measuring Performance (North Central Regional Educational Laboratory, 1992).
"We have been assessed in these last several decades by standardized tests, and those tests are very narrow and very confining and reduces the human being to those little numbers. Those numbers can be okay if everyone understands what they are and if in fact those numbers kind of take in a rich picture of what's happening, but people don't really understand when you get a CTBS score what that means, and it leaves so much out, because those kinds of passages do not help kids really learn anything and it really does not, and it is true that they are culturally biased. Never have those scores ever helped me ever know my kids and what they knew and why they needed to know."
This Critical Issue summary was researched and written by Deborah Winking, senior consultant at Panasonic Foundation in Pleasanton, California, and formerly an evaluation associate at North Central Regional Educational Laboratory in Oak Brook, Illinois.
Date posted: 1997