Scott McLeod suggests that we might be the problem with education. Blaming the problem of low-level “kill and drill” education on the test is no excuse:
Our prevalent instructional model that emphasizes low-level, decontextualized, factual recall was dominant long before ‘the tests.’ Our challenges of providing higher-order thinking experiences, opportunities for authentic collaboration, and real-world connectedness existed long before the No Child Left Behind Act.
I don’t think Scott means to suggest that there aren’t problems with The Test. However, he does ask us to take a look at ourselves and not use the test as an excuse to absolve us of a responsiblility to provide high quality education to our students.
I experience the same kind of excuses in regards to the Open Court Reading Program. Whether or not we like the reading program, having it in our classes does not allow us to turn off that part of our responsiblity that requires an engaging curriculum and provides opportunity for higher level thinking and twenty-first century skills.