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ERIC Number: ED445098
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Jun-26
Pages: 11
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Political and Policy Issues Related to Large Scale Assessment.
Christensen, Doug
Bringing standards, assessment, and accountability from the state down to school districts is not the right way to implement new policies. Standards, assessment, and accountability must be thought of in a holistic way, and the complexity of the issues must be recognized. Educators must welcome the demand and directive that standards be implemented, and they must leave policy decisions to policymakers. Policy questions may include "why" something is done, but "what" and "how" questions are not policy and are the province of educators. Policy implementation should be guided by clear policy direction and support. It must also be recognized that standards, assessment, and accountability are not linear. The current system almost guarantees that standards-based classrooms will not happen because an assessment culture has developed based on measurement that has in many cases turned into a testing culture. To support standards, a learning and teaching culture must be developed that is not defined by measurement, but by the outcomes that educators are trying to achieve. Policy issues that should frame the substance and content of policies about standards, assessment, and accountability include: a broad definition of accountability; the recognition of the importance of classroom-based assessment on top of which school- and district-based assessment and, finally, state assessment can stand; the improvement of learning, which should be the purpose of all standards, assessment, and accountability; the importance of classroom tests in providing information about students; and the principle that accountability leads to responsibility. (SLD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A