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Test Result Inflation and the Reign of Terror

Wed, Aug 10, 2011

General Education, Uncategorized

by Charles W. Bindig, Ed.D.

It should not be surprising that a major urban education system (Atlanta) has been hit with allegations and admissions of test result inflation, considering the national focus on results when it comes to the success or failure of American schools. Immediately after the passage of NCLB in 2001, this author saw many intelligent and able administrators retire from the schools, since they were well aware that the specter of 100% proficiency in even suburban settings was probably unattainable. Now we have a major school system hit with a testing scandal in the same week that the National Education Association has finally conceded that test scores are reasonable measures of teacher performance. It should be noted that the AFT started to support this effort two years prior.

What has become a “Gathering Storm” is the immense pressure on schools to overcome and conquer all of the myriad of variables that can affect student achievement, and demonstrate progress toward a far-off goal. It is not surprising that urban school districts will allow a “Reign of Terror” to develop in order to provide the illusion that student achievement is increasing. You need to ask that question “Where is the educational leadership in school districts such as in Atlanta? I am certain that if we looked at the training of the administrators who have been accused of the test score inflation, it will be discovered that many have taken courses in educational leadership and should have been proponents of enlightened and ethical stewardship. Not so, While the recently resigned superintendent of the Atlanta is enjoying a vacation in Hawaii, students and teachers have been ill-served. Where is the educational leadership and are the universities to blame?

Dr. Bindig is a full time manager of educational outreach for American Public University System and an instructor for the School of Education. He holds an undergraduate degree from The College of New Jersey and a masters degree in Musicology from Rutgers University. Dr. Bindig received an Ed.D. from Nova Southeastern University with a dual concentration in Educational Leadership and Instructional Technology. He has 32 years of experience as a public school teacher, principal and superintendent in the New Jersey public schools. Dr. Bindig has taught for several online universities as well as serving as a dissertation advisor at Nova Southeastern University. His main focus in educational research is student achievement gains facilitated via technology.

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