Lisa Kelly, Yearning for Lake Wobegon: The Quest for the Best Test at the Expense of the Best Education, 7 S. Cal. Interdisc. L.J. 41 (1998), https://digitalcommons.law.uw.edu/faculty-articles/315
Yearning for Lake Wobegon: The Quest for the Best Test at the Expense of the Best Education
Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal
education, standards, testing
This article first will outline the various tests or assessments. Next, recent federal and state mandates for standardized testing of elementary school children will be examined. Then, the educational literature will be reviewed to expose the dangers of testing, particularly in the early grades. Finally, I will urge that the Clinton administration, Congress, and the states step back from this manner of securing educational adequacy. These governmental policies are rooted in the stated intention of guaranteeing that all schools are doing right by all of the children. However, early testing fosters the opposite result-educational inequity through tracking, retention, and the early creation of a racial and class caste system. Furthermore, widespread testing of the type advocated by the federal government is an expensive proposition. Given the negative effects of testing, I advocate the use of these funds in other ways to address children's real educational needs.