Education column: School testing weeks not holidays

By Penny Bailey: Clovis Municipal Schools

No homework for a week.

No, teachers are not on strike and it is not a gift from the new superintendent.

But, what is happening is Standards Based Assessment testing.

Previously, I thought this was a free week because students don’t have to study, and teachers don’t have to teach. I recently learned my thought process about testing week is not correct.

First, the test itself contains secure information. Every test booklet has a serial number and they are inventoried when they come into the school district, when they go to the schools, and when they are assigned to each teacher. After the tests are administered, they are inventoried in reverse order.

I also learned if a teacher does not properly administer the test, they could lose their teaching license. Wow … what a surprise.

There are guidelines on how to properly administer the tests. And, since teachers are the ones administrating the tests, they are held accountable.

So, what about the students? Since they are not doing homework or learning new material do they have a free week?

Consider this … they have to sit, read, think about the answers, and stay focused all day. Now, you might say that is no different than what they would normally do, but it is.