Lorrie A. Shepard: Testing Students This Spring Would Be a Mistake

Diane Ravitch's blog

Lorrie A. Shepard is one of the nation’s most eminent assessment experts. In this article in Education Week, she explains that it would be a mistake to resume testing this spring. She is University Distinguished Professor in the research and evaluation methodology program of the school of education at the University of Colorado Boulder.

Shepard writes:

This past spring, the U.S. Department of Education gave states permission to cancel federally mandated state testing and accountability reporting because of pandemic-induced lockdowns. As the new testing season approaches, manyadvocacy groupsare urging the department to reinstate testing requirements.

As an assessment researcher who has studied both high-stakes statewide tests and very differentclassroom-assessment processes, I am alarmed when testing advocates claim that test data will automatically serve equity goals. Advocates do not acknowledge any potential harm from testing for the very students in communities of color most traumatized by COVID-19. If the…

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