Skip to comments.Liz Phillips, Brooklyn principal: I have never seen a worse ELA exam. Other principals agree.
Posted on 04/08/2014 1:39:02 PM PDT by servo1969
Liz Phillips, Brooklyn principal: I have never seen a worse ELA exam. Other principals agree.
See below comment from Liz Phillips, principal of PS 321 in Brooklyn, who was scathing about the 2012 exam as well, but says this one was as bad or worse. One would think with all the controversy and parents opting out, NYSED and Pearson would be careful to construct a better set of exams. But perhaps they are simply incapable of doing so.
PS 321 PARENTS--Our 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders have just completed three days of the New York State English Language Arts Exam. Your children were wonderful and worked incredibly hard. On the whole, we think that we were able to protect them from the worst stresses of the test, and most seemed fine during most of the exam. However, the teachers and administration are truly devastated by what a terrible test it was and how little it will tell us about our students.
Because we are bound by test security, we cannot reveal details but we can tell you that we have never seen an ELA exam that does a worse job of testing reading comprehension. There was inappropriate content, many highly ambiguous questions, and a focus on structure rather than meaning of passages. Our teachers and administrators feel that this test is an insult to the profession of teaching and that students scores on it will not correlate with their reading ability.
Because of this, the staff has decided to hold a protest outside of school TOMORROW, FRIDAY, APRIL 4, FROM 8:15-8:35 to express their extreme dissatisfaction with the ELA exam. Parents are invited to join the staff before going into classrooms for Family Friday.
Liz Phillips is not alone. Here is another principal, commenting on the Testing Talk website:
Day 3 of the Common Core NYS ELA is absurd. The third grade test includes an excerpt from a book that, according to Scholastic, is written at a Grade Level Equivalent of 5.2. Its Lexile Measure is 650L, and its categorized as a Level X Guided Reading selection. Yet, it appears on a test that has been written for third grade students.
Day 3 of the Common Core NYS ELA is incongruous with Common Core Learning Standards. The same third grade test asks students to identify how specific paragraphs support the organizational structure of a selected piece of literature. The Reading Standards for Literature in Grade 3, with respect to Craft and Structure, state that Grade 3 students should be able to: Refer to parts of stories, dramas, and poems when writing or speaking about a text, using terms such as chapter, scene, and stanza; describe how each successive part builds on earlier sections. It is not until Grade 5, according to The Reading Standards for Literature, that students should be able to: Explain how a series of chapters, scenes, or stanzas fits together to provide the overall structure of a particular story, drama, or poem.
Day 3 of the Common Core NYS ELA is ill-conceived. A short- answer question that appears on the Grade 4 exam calls upon students to explain why a specific piece of text is effectively written. Regardless of what the Reading Standards say, or dont, about evaluating text, how in the world can a test be created around such an entirely subjective question?
An administrator of a suburban public school, I take seriously my responsibility to students and teachers. It seems to me that the most responsible thing that I could have done this morning would have been to excuse teachers and students from being bullied by an absurd, incongruous and ill-conceived test.
Here are the observations of another principal, Kate Matthews:
I am the Principal of a 3rd and 4th Grade diverse building, and I am highly disappointed in these tests. While Days 1 and 2 were challenging for our students, Day 3, particularly for 3rd Grade was poorly written, developmentally inappropriate and soul crushing for our students and their teachers. Students did not have enough time on ANY of these books. I do not think I am permitted to speak specifically about the nature of the questions, and who knows whether or not NYS will ever release these questions.
However, the very first passage with highly technical language was a terrible example of non fiction writing. Where were the text features that our students have learned to use with such proficiency? To ask students to define and understand two terms that are deeply buried in a text is developmentally inappropriate. The amount of time it took students to answer this question left little time for the remaining 2 lengthy passages with 3 short answers and 1 extended response.
I am left to wonder if Pearson made a mistake: was this truly intended for 3rd Grade students?
These Jagoff teachers are the biggest supporters of progressive government policies. Eat it! The sad thing is they are dragging children through their social playground and destroying their futures.
Beyond the nature of the questions, I’m appalled that an exam should take three days to complete.
Heck, my calculus and thermodynamics finals in college were one hour long apiece. Why does an elementary school exam need to be three days long?
Even Democrats hate Common Core: COMMON CORE IS UN AGENDA 21
I'm a veteran urban public school teacher, and you're absolutely right about that. The majority of my colleagues vote leftist, then they get stuck with oppressive leftist mandates and whine about it.
Of course, there are always exceptions. Some of my colleagues are probably more pro-Palin than Palin herself.
P.S. By your use of "jagoff", I'm guessing you've spent some time in the Burgh. Perhaps you've even enjoyed an Iron or two while watching the Bucs.
That being said, three days of testing is ridiculous. A couple of hours should be the absolute most to tell what you know unless it is some professional test like a bar exam or something like the SAT.
I was a great reader (still love to read, ketchup bottles, everything), I think I read at a 12th grade level in the 6th grade. But I don’t think I’d’ve been able to handle that stuff in the 3rd grade.
Common core seems to have one thing in common - everybody who has to actually deal with it hates it.
Geeeeeeee......do you think the Republicans could make some hay with that.....earn some cred with working class parents....hmmmmmm.... NAH, they are too busy lauding illegal immigrants for their “love”.
“....three days of testing is ridiculous.”
Yes, three days of testing to determine if 3rd graders can read, and evidently all they will learn is no, 3rd graders cannot read at a 5th grade level.
You tax dollars at work folks!
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