New York City Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum issued an analysis and statement today in support of parents complaints about excessive testing. The analysis confirmed what parents are seeing -- that eight year old third graders are now faced with twelve standardized tests, made up of two state tests and ten Bloomberg-mandated city tests.
For the full statement click here. See press coverage here in the Sun and here in Newsday. In the press coverage, DOE spokesman Andrew Jacob adopted the condescending tone that has become standard when the Bloomberg adminstration addresses parent concerns.
The new standardized tests are part of the DOE's "accountability" initiative, the primary thrust of the administration's education reforms.
While state governments, Congress and presidential candidates are questioning the wisdom of excessive standardized tests, the Bloomberg administration continues to hew to its extremist positions. DOE Chief Accountability Officer Jim Liebman has overseen both the sharp ramp-up in standardized testing and the system to assign letter grades to schools based on the test results. The letter grading system has been widely criticized by parents, teachers, academics and our political representatives. Gotbaum's report is welcome scrutiny of the similarly misguided testing regime.