Dear Commons Community,
A Washington Heights elementary school has canceled the new standardized multiple-choice tests for its youngest public school students — after more than 80% of parents opted to have their kids sit out the exam.
In an apparently unprecedented move, Castle Bridge School parents — representing 83 of the 97 students — rejected the new city requirement that affects 36 schools that serve only K through second grade. As reported in the New York Daily News:
“My feeling about testing kids as young as 4 is it’s inhumane,” said PTA co-chairwoman Dao Tran, mother of first-grader Quyen Lamphere, 5. “I can only see it causing stress.”
The state now requires schools to factor test scores — in one form or another — into their teacher evaluations, which are new this year in the city.
Students at the 36 “early education” schools are too young to take the regular state reading and math exams, so the littlest kids are sitting down for different tests.
As the Daily News reported earlier this month, such exams, given to kids as young as 4, require students to fill in bubbles to show their answers.
It’s like the SAT for kids barely older than toddlers. And parents resent it.
“Our principal does a good job,” said PTA co-chairwoman Elexis Pujolos, mother of kindergartner Daeja, 4, and first-grader AJ, 6. “A test could not possibly measure what she is able to.”
Congratulations to the parents at the Castle Bridge School for being so involved with their children’s education and taking a stand against the insanity of high-stakes, standardized testing.