I would like TEA to know that the STAAR test corrupts the learning environment. It makes the school environment toxic. It makes teachers teach to the test. That means that my children, and countless others, are getting less science, less history and less social studies because it isn't on the test.
Dear Mrs. Debbie Ratcliffe,
In response to your statements in the article linked here (http://cbs7.com/community/article_99b89954-c84d-11e4-9dd7-638dd8e65ca4.html), I would like you to know that the STAAR test corrupts the learning environment. It makes the school environment toxic. It makes teachers teach to the test. That means that my children, and countless others, are getting less science, less history and less social studies because it isn't on the test. I cannot in good conscience allow my child to be part of a system of testing that I see is destroying the public school system. It is not making anything better for anyone except the testing companies and anyone that they are bribing. I will not allow my child to used as a tool by the federal or state or local government to evaluate teachers or schools. That is not his job in school. The powers that be cannot make my child do their work. There are laws against putting such young children to work. My child doesn't work for the district to evaluate teachers or schools. I will not allow his data to be made public in the classroom, or be used to reward or punish anyone. My child will not take the STAAR test.
It is virtually impossible to get away from the focus on the test the way that the high stakes system is set up. It is naive to think that the entire school year now does not revolve around one, invalid, poorly written, super expensive test. When I conference with my child's teacher, the focus is how he'll do on the test. I am not concerned with how he will do on this ridiculous test. The test prep material are my child's text book. They are so poorly written that several times none of the multiple choice answers were correct. School has now become STAAR prep school. It's really disgusting, and I will not abandon the public school system. It is too important, I will fight for what is right. My child cannot get 3rd and 4th grade back. We are losing instructional time NOW. Everyday that passes is another school day spent prepping for the STAAR. I am over it.
Please listen to parent concerns. This is a real issue that isn't going to just disappear. More and more parents are exercising their rights as American citizens to peacefully protest this high stakes system that is harmful to our children and their education.
Read how you can fight for real learning for our kids at http://www.houstoncvpe.org/opt_out.