Friday, February 29, 2008

More on Standardized Testing and Private Schools

This blurb in the Tennessean covers a bill recently introduced in the TN legislature that would require all school-age students (even if home schooled or attending private school) to take state tests. Two things that I find interesting:

1. The chief objection to this bill seems to be that taking these tests will narrow the curriculum. I wonder if these same people would put forth a similar argument against testing in public schools. On the one hand, it would seem unfair to argue that students in private and home schools should have broader curricula than students in public schools but, on the other, it seems logical to assume that schools run by the government should also be subject to more governmental regulation.

2. Despite the paucity of information in the blurb, the message board is out of control with anger from both sides. Whether or not any accountability would accompany the state tests is left up to the reader to infer -- and people do, passionately. It seems as though most of the opinions expressed are only relevant if the writer is correctly inferring the rest of the facts.

Must opinion on education policy salways be so reactionary and ideological?

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