Stanley L. Swartz, Ph.D.
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Candice Bazylak
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2. Should accountability extend to special education? Should we include children with disabilities in standardized testing?

Accountability should extend to every aspect of education.  When looking at standardized testing, I’m not sure if this is the most effective way to measure whether or not the teacher and student have made progress to understanding a subject.  I have got myself on numerous occasions regurgitating information that I have yet to fully understand.   We as educators put a great deal of emphasis on these test, making the test the center fold and not the knowledge.  We can assess children’s behavior and even their deficits in learning and attention but have yet to assess their abilities, their strengths, and which way to measure their knowledge base.  Standardized testing is antiquated, only taking probability into account. 

Taking out standardized testing leaves educators with a need for an effective and efficient method of ensuring that every child is getting the education that is afforded to them under the law.  I have yet to understand the trials and tribulations of having my own students, ensuring their grasp of a certain subject matter, or hoping that each one has the ability on that day to communicate all that he/she has learned but I know the feeling of leaving a classroom after a test, not knowing an answer on a test, just to remember it on the way home.  I am frequently reminded of Einstein’s idea of asking a fish to climb a tree. 

There is need for special education accountability, I’m just not sure standardized testing is the way to do it.  In fact, I am not sure standardized testing is the way to measure anyone person’s knowledge of subject matter. 

krista despain
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I agree with you  on accountability. I believe that everyone needs to be held accountable for everything that we do, especially as educators. There has to be some way to be able to track or test or chart with accuracy students and their development. Perhaps after a few years of us teaching and seeing firsthand how this all really works we would be able come up with an idea to hold people accountable.
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