Save Our Schools Supports Seattle Teachers Stand on Standardized Tests

Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 11, 2013
Contacts:
Lee Barrios, SOS Steering Committee lee@saveourschoolsmarch.org Telephone 985-789-8304
Bob George, SOS Steering Committee bob@saveourschoolsmarch.org Telephone 708-692-5818

In an historic move, teachers of Garfield and Ballard High Schools in Seattle, Washington, are refusing to administer to students the district’s MAP (Measure of Academic Progress).

Save Our Schools, (www.saveourschoolsmarch.org) a national organization dedicated to public education as the cornerstone of a democratic society, fully supports this informed decision.

The professional teaching staff at Garfield has provided compelling evidence of MAP’s negative impact on students and the invalidity of the test itself. A press release published in its entirety by Dr. Diane Ravitch, former Assistant Secretary of Education, points out that even the Northwest Evaluation Association [NWEA] itself, the parent company to MAP, has advised districts to carefully restrict the use of the test.

Garfield teacher and spokesperson Dora Taylor said, “I hope that the example set by Garfield High School will resonate in school districts across the United States and around the world. High-stakes testing is bad for students, bad for teachers, and bad for education.”

Indeed, Garfield has become a model for other actions. Teachers at Ballard High, also a Seattle school refused to give standardized tests. Save Our Schools is inspired by these Educators.

The Save Our Schools movement is dedicated to finding a better path for education reform in this country. As such, we stand in solidarity with the examples set by teachers at Garfield and Ballard High Schools. Our guiding principles include: an end to high stakes testing; equitable funding for all public schools; teacher, family and community leadership in forming public education policies; curriculum developed for and by local school communities.

Never before has there been a greater need for unity. Public schools and teachers are being evaluated and punished on the basis of their students’ standardized test scores.

Neighborhood schools, which are the most valuable assets in under-resourced communities, are being closed and replaced with privately-run charter schools.

National standards, curriculum, and testing regimen are being imposed top-down by corporate-style reformers and the Department of Education to the detriment of children learning.

Save Our Schools calls on all other groups and individuals, educators, parents, students and community activists to join us in the struggle to save our public schools and ensure a better and equal education for all.

Update: Please consider an online Petition in Support of Garfield Teachers and their refusal to administer MAP tests.

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