No Child Left Behind

April 29, 2011 5 comments

Since the 2005-2006 school year policies have been set in place to require standardized testing to be given to students from third to eighth grade. These tests are focused on the area of mathematics and reading. As of the year 2007, students have been required to be tested at least once in elementary school, middle school, and high school in the area of science. The tests must meet certain standards that are set by each individual state. The results from each school must meet a “proficient” level as set by the state by the 2013-2014 school year and display “adequate yearly progress”. Any student in a school that fails to meet these standards three years in a row must be offered services including private tutoring (No Child).

Well, that’s the technical side of it at least. In reality, No Child Left Behind and other standardized testing requirements do not provide a genuine assessment of students, nor do they allow for a means of improvement in schools. They fail to take into account the fact that some children can’t keep up with the material. If a student can’t pass a class, they were previously kept back to repeat the class. Now, with the passage of NCLB, teachers must make accommodations for these children to ensure that their test scores are high enough to keep the schools operating under the faculties they have (Pros and Cons). Not only do the students suffer in this, but the well being of what will someday become the working population does as well.

Special Education teachers have it the worst. They are fighting a losing battle when they try to prepare students to take tests that will determine the rest of the child’s life. They are being taught math that they will never use, and science that has no lifetime relevance. They are being forced to structure sentences and regurgitate dates on a test. Special Education children are being dealt the worst blow of all of this. They are passed under the table so that they don’t have to continue to fail standardized tests, so that the schools will be able to raise their overall average. They are allowed to graduate without the faintest idea of when the Indian-American war was, and they can’t tell the difference between granite and grammar.

The standardized testing in the United States is a joke. Not all students are cut out to go to college, or to take careers that would require many of the skills learned in typical high schools. In Ohio, even those students attending a Vocational School must take the Ohio Graduation Test their sophomore year before they are permitted to graduate. They must pass all of these tests, which take a week of time, as well as take away from time that the students spend in their labs, learning a trade that will come to their benefit later in life.

Standardized testing also takes the originality out of schools. This especially effects the arts. Music and Art classes are the first to be cut when test scores are low and schools lose funding. The other extra-curricular activities are next to go, including agriculture, shop, and home etc. It affects the other core classes as well by forcing them to teach from strict guidelines that were distributed by the state in order to prepare their students for testing. Fun activities and new materials are often cut from curriculums. This is especially true for the English department. They are forced to focus on the test materials, and not on the things that the students are truly interested in. They are forced to strip classic literature from the curriculum in favor of more mainlined grammar and composition work.

Standardized tests are doing a great disservice to the youth of America. They are being forced to learn streamline material and they lack the depth and well-rounded knowledge of many of the generations before them. Although NCLB is a great idea in theory, in actual practice it fails as a means of showing growth of students (Pros and Cons). A two part test to show the relative development of each student as an individual would be much more effective in rating how educators are doing, but the government would much rather serve up standardized slop and expect the educators and the youth to accept it with a blind eye to the problems it creates.

“No Child Left Behind.” Education Week. Editorial Projects in Education, 21 Sept. 2004. Web. 19 Apr. 2011.

<http://www.edweek.org/ew/issues/no-child-left-behind/&gt;.

“Pros and Cons of No Child Left Behind.” Educational Research. Nov. 2006. Web. 19 Apr. 2011.

<http://www.ernweb.com/public/892.cfm&gt;.

Categories: Standardized Testing

Jail Bait

April 29, 2011 Comments off

There are some things better left unsaid, or so I have heard.  Many conflicts of public education  are on the news and discussed daily throughout our society.  Everyone has seemed to come to the conclusion that our public education system has issues and needs reformed.  With favoritism and politics in today’s high schools, many teachers and students are led to believe that they can do whatever they want without suffering any consequences.  This attitude leads to the major issue of teacher-student sex scandals.

My senior year of high school, my school went under a private investigation.  This investigation was put on by the school board and was meant to look into inappropriate teaher-student relationships.  It all started when our middle-aged gym teacher received a naked picture of a student in the mail!  He then innocently reported it.  Everyone knew with the police now involved, they were going to start asking questions.  After no leads to the naked picture scenario, they went on to investigate three specific teacher-student relationships.

One of these relationships involved a good friend of mine who was a varsity girl’s basketball player.  We all had noticed that our friend and the substitute teacher/ assistant girl’s basketball coach would disappear into the girl’s basketball locker room.  She had confirmed our suspicions weeks before the investigation even started.  When it came time to be questioned by the principal about the situation, everyone became silent.  The questioning however seemed to be less than satisfactory and it was obvious that the faculty knew the rumors were true but just did not want to get this new  up and coming teacher in trouble.  He had gone to the same high school and it seemed as if everyone turned the other cheek.  He disappeared from the classroom for the rest of the school year right up until right before graduation and didn’t finish out the season as the girl’s assistant basketball coach.  As soon as we graduated, my friend and the basketball coach became inseparable.  He currently teaches at the same school and continues to hold the position as assistant girl’s basketball coach.

The other teacher-student relationship in question was between our history teacher and the homecoming queen.  People began talking when everyone started to notice her in his classroom between class periods and before and after school.  She also made it well-known that their relationship was friendly ( to say the least).  As far as I know, no student was even questioned about this relationship and it blew over very quickly.  It is easy to reason that it wasn’t brought up because of both of their high social standings.  Their relationship fizzled out after we graduated and he went on to be promoted and became the middle school’s principal.

Lastly, a girl soccer player and special education teacher were in question.  She was also my friend at the time.  He was new to the county and did not have connections through the school faculty or school board.  When it came to the investigation in their case however, they were both honest.  They explained they had text messaged back and forth a few times but it had never gone beyond that.  Because of this honesty, he was fired.  The school deemed his behavior as unethical.

The examples I have given are just my own encounters of this problem.  Teacher-student sex scandals happen all over the nation ( Jagodzinski).  In fact, it has been continuing to happen for years.  From my own experiences, it would be easy to blame this epidemic on male teachers not being able to control their own desires.  However, this crime is not only committed commonly by male teachers but female ones also.  One of the most well-known cases is Mary Kay Letourneau and Villi Faulaau ( Cavanagh 29).  In this case, she reaped her 6th grade student, went to jail for seven years, and then married him upon her release (Cavanagh 32).  The family of Mary Kay and Villi also begged the General Attorney’s office to allow then to deal with the matter within their own families ( Cavanagh 31).

Just because sex scandals are a rarely heard of issue in public education doesn’t mean that the issue isn’t as relevant as others .  This issue leads back to trust in our public school system.  Teachers make the sole decision as to how are kids are to be educated.  Evaluating them as a teacher, always leads back to what type of relationship they have with the students. Thus, to truly evaluate a teacher and get to know them as a person and educator, it is a must to look at their relationships with students.

The first step to fixing this problem is being able to realize what we are doing wrong.  We cannot go about things with such ease and we must make these issues public! Rape and sexual harassment is not okay.  Some people such as Mary and Villi have argued that their love is true and they shouldn’t be punished for it (Jagodzinski).  There have also been debates on legal age high school students and as to whether having relations with teachers should be illegal.  Never the less we must remember that these high school students are still developing children and teacher-student relations are illegal in all fifty states.  Making things disappear because it is the easy thing to do isn’t the right thing to do.

The next step is to come to an agreement on what is the line we must draw in teacher-student relationships.  The law says that the minor is always innocent (Jagodzinski).  Thus every teacher needs to realize they will be held accountable for their own actions!

Lastly, we all have to make an effort.  It’s easy to cover the truth up to make people feel better.  But in reality we must approach this as benefiting the greater good.  One day we will have kids in high school.  Do you want them to have sexual relations with their teachers?

Sources

Jagodzinski, Jan. “Is There an Ethics of Diabolical Evil?  Sex Scandals, Family Romance, and Love In the School and Academy.” EBSCO. Springer, 2006. Web. 11 April 2011  http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=486860db-5649-48b6-b3da-9e84898749bd%40sessionmgr104&vid=5&hid=104.

Cavanagh, Shelia L. Sexing the Teacher. Canada: UBC Press, 2007. Print.

Standardized Testing

April 27, 2011 9 comments

Do you remember the five minute warnings? Recall that feeling of utter relief when you reached that last “STOP” in your answer booklet. It seems like ancient history for those of us that have graduated high school, but it is still a reality for many unfortunate American students. Some students, including me, quite enjoyed the week of standardized testing.  It was one of the more relaxed weeks. However, has it taken away from the original purpose of education? Isn’t the purpose for students to learn and master as much as possible? With our current system they certainly “learn” a lot. They also forget a lot, and miss many important topics. Certain things can’t be covered because the teacher fears that if the topics on the tests aren’t covered, it will be their job that is at stake. On top of that, even some of the topics that are taught sometimes are not covered for as long, or as in depth as they should have been. The quality and the quantity of teaching time on some subjects is lessened by the teachers’ rush to carry on and touch on all of them so that the students would excel on standardized testing. So students are left to memorize formulas and definitions, sometimes with very little actual understanding because they know that what is important to them is filling in the right bubble. Have we strayed so far from what education was intended to be?

                Initially standardized testing was simply intended to help sort out which schools need to work on what subject area in future years. Unfortunately instead of being a test of the standards set for a school, standardized tests have become the standard within themselves. When the state official chooses what the students should know, he will often expect the students to know everything about the subject matter they are being taught, according to professor emeritus at California University, and author of twenty five books, W.  James Popham. He further explains that “the resultant litanies of committee-chosen content standards tend to resemble curricular wish lists rather than realistic targets.” The natural response of the educators in the school system is to become overwhelmed with all of the matter they feel they should cover, and end up feeling forced to choose what is most important. Popham asserts that this leads to a serious issue in that students end up not having really mastered a lot of the content they were “taught” throughout the school year.

Some may question what, if we get rid of standardized testing, would we do to keep the teacher’s accountable? If the teacher’s make all of the tests themselves, wouldn’t they simply be more centered on what the teacher knows they have taught well? I, unfortunately, cannot refute this argument. However, in order for the system to be reformed, it doesn’t necessary demand that we get rid of standardized testing, but simply change it and make it more beneficial for the students while at the same time testing the teachers.

When I was in High School, I noticed the teachers’ constant emphasizing on what we’d be tested on at the end of each year. What would follow was the realization that most of the stuff I was supposed to have learned, I forgot about because the teacher had such limited time to cover the more difficult content. With standardized testing, the teaching style was based off of quantity of information and not so much quality. So re-learning things the following years was always a necessity, even though we were allegedly to have “mastered” it. Hence why it would be put on the test, correct? Formulas forgotten, and definitions left to be learned over again, standardized testing does no more, in its current state, than to prove how well a student can how much information for a relatively short period of time.

Do I believe that standardized testing should be completely deleted from our educational system? No, I don’t hold that opinion at all. I honestly don’t see any other way to test a teacher’s quality of work without some sort of test being created from an outside source. However I do believe that the current ideas for how standardized tests should be created and given out are very faulty and need reforming. I think that they should be created in such a way as to test the already clearly laid out curriculum. Thus far the tests themselves seem to vaguely lay out the curriculum.  They have become the alpha and omega of a teacher’s duty, and not simply a determiner of the teacher’s work ethic and skill.

Works Cited

Popham, W. Edutopia. The George Lucas Educational Foundation.  Web.

http://www.edutopia.org/f-for-assessment. 4 April 2011.

Stake, Robert. Phi Delta Kappa International. Nov. 1991. Web.

http://www.jstor.org/stable/20404603?seq=1. 4 April 2011.

Categories: Standardized Testing

Education Reform: Student Choices Good or Bad?

April 27, 2011 2 comments

Education needs to be reformed in many ways but the way that would help schools and education the most is that we need to let students choose their classes more extensively. Students that are in high school should have a core curriculum but they should be able to pick their electives more than they are now.  The students that do not have a good time in high school or do not get to learn about what they want to learn about are more likely to drop out. If they do not drop out they will most likely not go to college. This is a big problem in today’s society because without a college degree or at least a high school diploma you cannot get a job.

When I was in high school all I wanted to do was take agricultural related classes because I knew that I wanted to be an agriculture education teacher but with the way my high school was set up I could only take one a year. This really held me back because if I could have taken more in depth agriculture related classes I feel like I would have had the upper hand coming into college. I would have also had a more enjoyable high school experience as well. I know I am not the only person that feels this way about the United States high schools. Many students from my own high school as well as many of the neighboring high schools from around Brown County, Ohio which is where I am from. “In the 2007/2008 school year, more than 230,000 apprentices participated in full-time school-based training”( Federal Ministry of Education and Research). This web site also states that vocational and agriculture classes help students that do not like the conventional way of learning in the class room. More high schools should offer vocational and agricultural classes so that the students can either broaden their horizons or narrow down their elective classes to what they want to learn about. This will also let them learn about what they want to do for the rest of their lives and pursue a career in. This would drastically reduce high school dropout rates and in turn also raise the average grade point averages for many if not all schools.

The schools grade point averages or (G.P.A.’s) would rise due to the fact that students would actually be interested in what they were learning about so they would be more likely to pay attention in class rather than sleep or skip class all together. We need to reach out to the students that want to drop out of school rather than the kids that are still in school because the high school drop outs are just as important to educate as the one still in school. The national high school dropout rate is eight percent according to the IES National Center for Education Statistics. This statistic is backed by Annette M. Allen National Assessment of Educational Progress Coordinator. We need to try to reach out to the potential dropouts and try every to use every option that we possess in order to keep them in school.

If we can keep all of or at least the majority of the high school dropouts in school that would help the economy because they would be more educated so they would be able to start businesses of their own or at least get higher paying jobs so that they could buy more things. They would also be able to help the school systems because if they do not dropout then the school systems then the schools will get the money from their school dues. In turn the schools would receive greater revenue from students even though it is a small amount it will add up to be a sufficient amount over a long period of time. This would make for a lesser dependence on state and federal funds in order for the school to run during the school week as well as pay for more teachers and other school staff. With this in mind the schools could use more of the state and federal funds to buy more and or upgrade the computers, class room supplies, as well as raise teacher’s and other staff’s salaries. These salary increases would most likely make the teachers want to teach to a higher standard which would also make a good incentive for them to receive these bonuses.

Some people say that if students are able to pick more of their classes then they will just pick the classes that get them through the easiest. This may be true in some cases but for the most part students that are passionate about what they are going to do for the rest of their lives will take their class schedules seriously. This would greatly help the students that are trying to get into specific colleges or specific programs in college. The class selections would also help students that did not know what they wanted to do after they graduated by giving them the opportunity to take classes in a variety of different subjects.

All of the things that have been mentioned just go to show how important that education reform is and will always continue to be in todays as well tomorrow’s societies. If we make the schools fit more to the needs of the students of today we will be able to raise grades and we will also be able keep more students from dropping out of school all together. The reason that we have schools is to teach people and if the students do not enjoy what they are being taught then they will not really learn anything. That is why we should reform the school systems and let the students pick more of their classes.

Categories: Curriculum Reform

African American Achievement Gap

April 27, 2011 2 comments

The African American achievement gap is one of the most pressing problems in U.S. education today. The No Child Left Behind Act, signed into law by President George W. Bush in January 2002, greatly increases pressure on states to address the achievement gap in public schools, requiring them to publish test score seperately for racial and ethnic groups and to work to eliminate gaps in achievement. Achievement gap is a contemporary expression used to refer to the differences in the academic performance of subpopulations of students. The African American achievement gap has not closed, although progress is being made. Research literature provides substantial evidence of differences betweeb African Americans and Whites along a number of dimensions ranging from socioeconomic status to academic attainment.

Although some Black students are doing well academically on predominantly White college campuses, many often exhibit a marked decrease in performance from their high school grades over and beyond what is generally expected for adjustment to college-level work. Higher education unlocks many doors to economic, professional, and social opportunities. Student’s educational outcomes are a function of their family background, cognitive abilities, quality of prior schooling, and learning-style preferences. However, prior research suggests that status attainment and human capital variables do not fully explain the gap. Many educators assert that culture impacts learning and achievement, and that changes in higher education are needed based on the richness found in all cultures. The African American cultural orientation suggests that many Black students will perform best in learning environments that are holistic, field-dependent, and high-context. Holistic is characterized by harmony, cooperation, affect, socialization, and community, with relational and creative learning relevant to one’s own experiences. Field-dependent emphasizes learning from a global perspective and the social, interactive aspects of learning. High-context relies on nonverbal, indirect, implicit, and informal communication; high personal, relational commitment; social time orientation; importance of comprehensive thinking versus analytical thinking. Closing the achievement gap in higher education entails considering the varying influences of both African American and hip-hop cultural influences upon Black college students. Excellent schools possess an ethos in which academic success and effort are important. The school must do its part to remove or reduce the impact of challenges faced by minority students by providing a strong social support system that values and promotes academic achievement, and by providing academic and “socioemotional” system to assist students understanding of self, diversity, and their talents. Lastly an important obstacle to closing the achievement gap is the present attitude of many school administrators and faculty members at PWIs, who are more likely to make stereotypical attributions by associating deficits with blacks and superior achievement with whites. Administrators and faculty must learn to regard existing racial and ethnic achievement patterns as unnatural. Those who have a deficit frame of reference turn the focus of the achievement gap away from their own attitudes, beliefs, and practices to those of students. They externalize the problem and fail to see how changes within themselves could help close the gap. The focus of their attitudes, beliefs, and practices must move away from deficit-thinking to equity-thinking. Organizational learning is required to bring about changes in the cognitive frames of individuals so that “the knowledge production itself may become the form of mobilization” that induces individuals to make the cognitive shift (Gaventa & cornwall, 2001, p.76).

The African American achievement gap has not closed. Continued efforts to close the academic achievement gap are essential if we are to have a society characterized by social equity. School administrators and faculty members can help achieve this goal. The achievement gap represents a complex problem with many causes both internal and external to the school. However, African Americans are not monolithic regarding their personal characteristics and preferences. Although many African Americans have similar learning styles and cognitive preferences, theses preferences are not universal among all African Americans.

Categories: Uncategorized

Teacher Bias?

April 27, 2011 8 comments

Teacher Bias?

            There are many events that go on in a school, but one general idea is that the student’s education is the most important factor of all. In turn, most schools will try to do everything they can to try and make sure that the students get the most out of their school experience. There are many factors that can increase or decrease the level of experience the student receives; teacher pay, standardized testing, teacher training, and college admissions are just a few topics that contribute to this. One problem that is overlooked by school administration is teacher bias.

Teacher bias is where teachers will play favorites according to the clique status of the student. For an example, band kids in a math class are all receiving bad grades. These students go in before and after school to get help on everything that they do not understand. Yet, they are still receiving bad grades. One girl thinks that this is incorrect so she decides to check her grades online. She finds that papers that came back with grades are entered as zeros in the grade book, as if she never turned in the work. She also finds that grades on the papers and grades in the grade book do not match, so she takes all of the papers to the teacher. The teacher enters the correct grades, and her grade goes from a low D to a high B. This issue was not a mistake. It was done on purpose because of teacher bias. The girl in this example was me, and that is why I chose to write about this particular topic.

Teacher bias can be considered a form of bullying. Barbara Coloroso’s book, The Bully, the Bullied, and the Bystander: From Preschool to High School, breaks down what bullying is considered. (http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=krsowK_K9OgC&oi=fnd&pg=PR13&dq=what+teachers+can+do+to+reduce+cliques&ots=UsofP_uxXe&sig=nXmZYTwciNJTa8CKS74136Rlf70#v=onepage&q&f=false).  She describes bullies as tormentors because the bullied students are not just being teased. They are being tormented because the bullying affects the way they feel about themselves. Each year, 1 out of 13 people under the age of 19 attempt suicide due to bullying, a rate which has tripled in the last 20 years (http://www.suicide.org/). It is a teacher’s job to stop any bullying seen. To be a part of the bullying as a teacher is completely out of line. A reason for why a teacher may fall into this can be due to them being bullied as a student in high school. Some teachers want the acceptance from the popular students. They want to be the “cool” teacher (these are usually the ones that were bullied in high school). It is almost as if they are afraid of the popular students. Other teachers just do not like the “unpopular” kids. These teachers were the popular kids in high school. A person’s “clique status” usually sticks with them for the rest of their life (http://regions.hrsa.gov/adults/tip-sheets/default.aspx#educators). Some people argue that bullying is good for students. It could be as a way that readies them for how to deal with difficult people later on in life, but how would being bullied by a teacher do any good? It would only hurt the student’s self-confidence even more seeing as how the downing was coming from someone who is supposed to be a role model.

What can schools do to stop this? One thing they can do is observe their teachers better. It might be useful to get someone who the teacher does not know to observe for them, that way the teachers will not “put on an act” while being watched by an administrator. Another thing that they could do is take into account the “clique status” of the students getting bad grades. Administrators and teachers are well aware of the cliques students belong to. It might also help for them to discourage any clique activities when they are seen. Penelope Eckert, an anthropologist that studies high school students, believes that cliques are unhealthy to students. She states that students join cliques to be a part of something and experience different types of personalities. Unfortunately, this is harmful to their individuality, and their education. They become so involved in being accepted, that they try to be like someone their not and completely throw aside their education http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=RtTZ230kVPYC&oi=fnd&pg=PR7&dq=cliques+in+highschool&ots=NVL8wPGu1x&sig=cuS1hQTUFOyzjDsWmKJ8dFybedI#v=onepage&q&f=false(). The most important thing every member of faculty in a school can do is learn as much as they can about every kind of bullying, and know the best strategies to take when trying to solve the problem (http://regions.hrsa.gov/adults/tip-sheets/default.aspx#educators ).

If the main focus of a school is the student’s education, then why do things such as teacher bias go on? One of the most common reasons that nothing is done about teacher bias is because the administrators do not believe the students when they try to tell them that it is going on. When I tried to tell my administrators, even though I had evidence to back it up, they still seemed to ignore it. They could have thought that I had something against the teacher, or they were afraid to confront the teacher about it. This could be because the administrators are afraid to upset or fire the teacher because they have been there for a long time (usually longer than the administrators themselves) (http://regions.hrsa.gov/adults/tip-sheets/default.aspx#educators ). In conclusion, administrators and teachers must make themselves aware of these issues if they want any chance of stopping them. If nothing is done about teacher bias, it may harm the student’s education, which is something no one would want to do on purpose.

Works Cited

Coloroso, Barbara. The Bully, the Bullied, and the Bystander: From Preschool to High School. New York: Harper Collins, 2003. Print.

Ekert, Penelope. Jocks and Burnouts: Social Categories and Identity in the High School. New York: Teachers College Press, 1989. Print.

McEvoy, Alan. Teachers Who Bully Students: Patterns and Policy Implications. Illinois: Research Press, 2005. Print.

Suicide Prevention, Awareness, and Support. Suicide.org. n.d. Web. 4 April, 2011.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Stop Bullying Now. Widmeyer,  n.d. Web. 4 April, 2011.

ACT/SAT: Too Much Pressure

April 26, 2011 1 comment

Should the results of one test have as big of an impact as deciding whether or not you get accepted into the University or College that you wish to attend? In my opinion one test should not be the reason someone doesn’t get into college; on the other hand without entrance exams there would not be a set limit for the acceptance of students that wish to attend a cetain college. Entrance exams do not prove how successful your high school career was. Entrance exams also do not show how effective your work ethic is. However we must take into consideration the amount of applicants that colleges receive per year along with the many different grading scales that high schools have created.  Universities must set qualification in order to eliminate applications. The question is; should entrance exams be eliminated?

There are two sides on the issue concerning whether or not entrance exams should be eliminated. The side supporting the elimination of entrance exams gives the arguments that entrance exams provide a disadvantage for people of minorities, people of the female gender, and people with poor economic standings.  The opposing side of the issue provides the argument that without common standard colleges can’t eliminate applicants. The opposing side argues that grade inflation makes it difficult for colleges to base acceptance on grades based on the accuracy of the student’s academic achievement.

The argument that supporters of eliminating entrance exams relates to the disadvantage of minority, female, and people who have little money. Experts that support this argument have explained that entrance exams underestimate college performance of students based on the results of entrance exams.  According to Donald Stewart the president of College Board, “increasing reliance on standardized tests as affirmative action laws are struck down could lead to simply the registration of higher education.” This expert is saying that colleges rely on entrance exams when eliminating applicants and should rely less on entrance exam. An accurate example of the misleading results of entrance exams is the fact that females tend to have lower scores on entrance exams compared to men but are more successful in college.  Another example that could support that entrance exams are biased could be the difference in scores on entrance exams between minorities.” Christopher Jenks, a professor at Harvard University explains that entrance exams make it difficult to obtain the goal of racial groups accepted in college in the United States. The lower test scores are the biggest setback to racial equality.”

The opposing argument that is against eliminating entrance exams make the argument that without a set qualification or standard colleges would not have an efficient way to determine what the qualifications and which applicants meet the criteria. Supporters argue that entrance exams are used to determine which students are more likely to be successful in college. Entrance exams are not based on gender or race. Another argument to support entrance exams is that also explain that high school grading has a tendency of teachers giving higher grades then in the past. According to my research in 1987 students with A minus or above grade point average was at 27% and in 1996 jumped to 36% at the same time the students A minus and above grade point average score on entrance exams like SAT and ACT dropped 15 points. This statistic proves that grades are being given not accordingly to what the students actually obtain academically and they are not reliable when it comes to making the decision whether or not a student will be successful in college.  Supporters argue the difference of scores between social groups such as minorities and females are not because of the test. The difference could be factors such as; the students home environment, the quality of the school, and also money. Supporters say it is not possible to eliminate standardized testing becomes colleges have to many applicants to eliminate. California University at Berkeley receives 27,000 applicants a year for a class size of 3,500 students.  The opposing side has brought up the solution of not eliminating entrance exams but for teachers to try and help students to meet the standard that is required.

In conclusion in my opinion entrance exams are the best ways to determine which applicants get accepted and applicants are turned away. Grades are not the best solution to eliminating the entrance exams. Grades are not the best solution because teachers give students grades that haven’t been earned and not based on the student’s academic achievement. Entrance exams also are helping when admitting students because it sets the qualifications.

Work Cited

“College Entrance Exams.” Issues & Controversies On File: n. pag. Issues & Controversies. Facts On File News Services, 12 Mar. 1999. Web. 11 Apr. 2011. <http://www.2facts.com/article/i0400520&gt;.

Categories: Standardized Testing
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