ERIC Number: ED326312
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
Testing, Tracking, and Retaining Young Children: An Analysis of Research and Social Policy.
Meisels, Samuel J.; And Others
Many professionals are convinced that more testing, tracking, and retention are taking place in the early school years than ever before. They also believe that developmentally inappropriate modifications to curricula are being implemented. As a result of inappropriate use of standardized tests, disproportionate numbers of poor and minority children have been retained or placed in extra-year programs. This paper explores these issues and makes recommendations concerning uses of assessment data and alternatives to conventional testing practices. The report also discusses the large number of unready, at-risk children entering kindergarten. Sections of the text focus on: (1) issues and background on testing, tracking, and retention; (2) high stakes testing, i.e., the use of tests to make important decisions that immediately and directly affect those tested; (3) a rational perspective on tests and testing; (4) ways in which schools, teachers, and tests are failing minority children; (5) a rationale for testing young children, guidelines for deciding to use particular kinds of tests, characteristics of norm-referenced and criterion-referenced instruments, and criteria for selecting developmental screening instruments and school readiness tests; and (6) needed research about alternatives to standardized testing. Ninety-seven references are included. (RH)
Descriptors: Criteria, Criterion Referenced Tests, Early Childhood Education, Educational Practices, Educational Testing, Grade Repetition, Guidelines, Kindergarten, Minority Group Children, Norm Referenced Tests, Racial Bias, Research Needs, School Readiness Tests, State Programs, Test Selection, Test Use, Track System (Education), Young Children
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Center for Education Statistics (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: A commissioned paper.