Do We Need 95% of Students to Take Tests?

Is the 95 percent participation in yearly testing, of all students, in the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) justified? We need to know.

Currently a conference committee is putting together a replacement for NCLB ( ESEA reauthorization) but, as it stands, it will continue to mandate yearly standardized testing of all students with the 95 percent participation rate unmistakably emphasized.

trtesting1002aClearly, I have an opinion about standardized testing but I have been willing to explore other points of view while considering that I could be wrong. So in looking to find official information on the topic, I ran across an article titled “Why We Need 95% of Students to Take Tests.”

As I read it, I became confused.

Were parents ever…

“begging for their kids to be tested”

…as Stephenie Johnson wrote?

After 13 years of data collection under NCLB, does the public know how the data was used and what value it had in school improvement? Maybe the public no longer realizes that the original ESEA (Elementary and Secondary Education Act) intended to help provide a level playing field for children from low-income families.

My schools are schools with a high concentration of such children. I know what I saw in my own district.

Have I…

“forgotten what happened before participation was required”?

I have not. Before participation in yearly externally developed standardized testing was required by federal law for all children, we were making progress in my schools by focusing on correcting the mistakes that were made with reading and math instruction…for the students, based on those students, and based on individual school differences.

We already knew we had problems and which schools were having the most problems. We didn’t need new standards or new tests to tell us what we already knew.

And we knew we were always going to have a certain number of children with special needs. We always had special testing for that.

Ms. Johnson wrote,

“Ensuring that students with disabilities were participating in assessments not only gave parents important data about how their kids were doing compared to their peers, it also guaranteed that school districts were held accountable for their entire student populations, not just the portion that consistently fared well on the tests.”

Ms. Johnson seems to think that the participation of children with disabilities in assessments designed for children without “disabilities” or “special needs” is an overall good thing.

I’m not a specialist on “special needs” and I have a different perspective because of my many years assisting in classrooms. I came to believe that every child has a special need of some kind and learning differences (disabilities) are plentiful in the non-labeled children as well as those with a diagnosis of a more serious nature. So because I recognize how opinionated I am on this topic, I posted Ms. Johnson’s article in hopes of getting some views from educators. Here’s the two that responded:

Larry Lawrence My experience as a district administrator with the California Master Plan for Special Education in the late 70’s and early 80’s was that we had considerably more information about students with special needs than the rest of our students – without subjecting them to inappropriately leveled standardized tests. You only had to sit in on a few IPI (Individualized Prescribed Instruction) conferences to realize the sophistication with which the special education teachers dealt with individual student needs. Of course, we had more adequate funding in those days.

The central claim of “Why We Need 95% of Students to Take Tests” is that unless we administer these national high stakes standardized tests to students with special needs we will not know enough to meet their needs is so off base.

Sheila Resseger I am a retired teacher from the RI School for the Deaf. Ideally students with special learning needs have the full panoply of resources available in their school to diagnose, assess, and monitor their progress. This is what they need and what the IDEA [Individuals with Disabilities Education Act] requires. To force them to be subjected to grade level assessments when their reading level is far below grade level, due to the impact of their disability, is abusive. There is no way to get meaningful “data” from this cruel enterprise. … This makes me crazy.

What I can tell you is that the mandated participation in yearly high-stakes standardized tests never “ensured” that districts were accountable to all students. In districts with limited resources (a real problem), the test results are used to prioritize the students who would be helped…leaving behind those in the non-prioritized categories… or who just didn’t make the cut. A test and sort system?

Ms. Johnson’s commentary is one of a recent barrage of articles (many paid for by astroturf groups) that are obviously aimed at parents in the Opt Out Movement or those considering test refusal. As a supporter of the use of test refusal as a means to a better end for education reform, I am personally offended by this comment,…

“…some are itching to rewind the clock, taking our education system back to a time when some kids—particularly students with disabilities—could easily be shunted to the sidelines.”

My truth, my perception, is based on my experiences. Ms. Johnson’s?…

“The truth is that we can’t protect these kids if the 95% participation threshold is rendered meaningless.”

Hogwash.

The truth is, participation in the standards-based testing reform concept has been a meaningless endeavor for my district since our state lawmakers put it into action in 1999 —before the concepts’ federalization in the 2001 NCLB. The same school in my district that had a notoriously poor reputation when I arrived here in 1990 was labeled “In Need of Improvement” under NCLB and now is a “Priority” school under NCLB waivers….Do the math!…. 25 years later, with higher standards and better tests, we have the same results but with an ever-changing label to tell a new generation of parents what earlier generations already knew.

Screen Shot 2015-08-21 at 8.25.36 PM

This is how you sell a nation a product NOT how you reform schools.

Participation in yearly standardized testing didn’t change the status of the school because high stakes testing doesn’t help individual children. Standards and testing should not be the first step in a school improvement process.

 

 

But “higher” standards and “better” tests have been made priority #1 for school improvement. And the Powers-that-Be have put our dollars on that horse —repeatedly — for the last 25 years.

America's Choice, 1990 http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED323297.pdf

America’s Choice, 1990
http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED323297.pdf

 

 

 

 

 

“Encouraging parents to opt out of tests could undermine the rights of others who fought so hard for their children to be included.”

Undermine the rights of others?

That doesn’t make any sense to me. If parents want their children tested because they don’t trust their teachers or school, or just want another verification of progress, so be it. That is their right to request use of the available public testing resources. They have always had the freedom to make that request.

What gives the government the right to infringe on the rights of other parents who do not need, or see the value in, their child’s time being spent testing? But then it isn’t really the government making this request, is it?

Achieve, Inc., the Education Trust, the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation and the National Alliance of Business launched the American Diploma Project (ADP) in 2001

2008 -Achieve, Inc., the Education Trust, the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation and the National Alliance of Business launched the American Diploma Project (ADP) in 2001.                      Public knowledge of the plan?

We need to end the lies and deception. We need to be informed. We need to get back to insisting that our government does it job —for US.

One federal role in education is the monitoring of equal educational opportunity.

Student participation in our National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), as done using random sampling, has proven itself over time to be a useful tool for monitoring national progress and in monitoring the achievement gap. But even that data is useless if not adequately analyzed and put into a useful format — for use by the public for improvement purposes.

Senator Obama September, 2008

Senator Obama September, 2008

Where is the clear report card from the president, to parents and the nation, to keep us informed – for federal and state accountability purposes?

Now, just so readers don’t think I’m a totally disagreeable person, here’s the point of agreement I found with Ms. Johnson,

“…it would behoove us all to take a quick trip back in the time machine.”

Let’s go back to 1965. Let’s return to the goals of the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Let’s rekindle the vision of its creators…..That would be the best first step towards progress in education reform.

"Education is the keystone in the arch of freedom and progress." JFK, 1963

“Education is the keystone in the arch of freedom and progress.” JFK, 1963

Should You Opt Out

Opting out of state tests means: You are using an effective tool to fight the unethical use of standardized testing that has, for decades, hindered real progress in providing equal access to quality education in America.

United Opt Out

United Opt Out

When significant numbers of parents opt their children out of testing, they are statistically invalidating an already faulty judge of the quality of education.

What do we know to be true?

Yearly assessments don’t need to be of the external, commercially developed standardized variety to determine how well individual children are doing, and whether schools are meeting the needs of all students. We have better ways of making those judgements.

It was never appropriate to mandate yearly standardized tests under the pretense that it was for the good of the student and was to better inform the parent.

It was never appropriate to mandate yearly standardized tests under the pretense that it was for the good of the student and was to better inform the parent.

Teacher, district, or state created annual tests are better able to judge individual, school, or state improvements because they can be designed to better target where identified improvements are needed and are better able to lessen the effects of regional language testing biases due to local dialects.

Personal aside (I just have to share my observations): Having moved from one area of the country to another, I observed regional differences for myself. “Pop” or “soda”? “Couch” or “sofa”? It seems simple enough for we adults to use words interchangeably but when young children have a limited vocabulary, it can make a big difference on tests that were written by some adult in another region of the country, or world, who unknowingly creates a testing bias. What do you call the mid-day meal —lunch, dinner or supper?

Screen Shot 2015-08-16 at 2.14.52 PM

Test Bias or Cultural Bias: Have We Really Learned Anything? by Stephen J. Schellenberg

Data from commercially developed standardized statewide assessments don’t provide the “valuable” information the public has been led to believe by marketers. Policymakers have been misled. The Code of Fair Testing Practices has been broken. The truth is that even “the SAT, a high-stakes test with significant consequences for the educational opportunities available to young people in the United States, favors one ethnic group over another.” But many states are now paying for every student to take these tests.

To base school and education policies on standardized test scores is inappropriate. Teachers who base their strategy with individual students in the classroom on a narrow set of results are more likely to be “off target.”

SOURCE: W. James Popham, Ed.D. is author of Testing! Testing! What Every Parent Should Know About School Tests (Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon, 2000).

SOURCE: W. James Popham, Ed.D. is the author of Testing! Testing! What Every Parent Should Know About School Tests (Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon, 2000).

Parents deserve better, more personal, and meaningful information about their child’s strengths and weaknesses.

What happens when you opt out?

Parents who are choosing to opt their child out of assessments are:

  • Refusing to have their child, teacher, and school judged by the snapshot provided by a commercially developed test that can only assess a very limited amount of knowledge and a very narrow set of skills.
  • Acknowledging that they trust the education professional in their classroom to be the best judge of their child’s academic development during this leg of his or her K-12 journey.
  • Recognizing their student’s teachers (in partnership with them) as the best judge of what skills and subjects their child is adept at, and to determine where he or she needs extra help.
  • Discouraging propagation of the theory that competition between schools is something they should value over their child’s individual well-being and are using their child’s absence during testing to send a message to state policymakers that fair funding should not be based on scores from commercially developed standardized tests.
  • Not jeopardizing their school from receiving crucial federal funds to support their child’s school, including special education and after school programs, because it is THE POLICYMAKERS themselves who have put this nation’s schools at risk for decades by using school funding to leverage a political agenda based on a free-market theory. They have refused to listen to patrons about the chaos their policies have created and it is THEY who are directly responsible for unfair and inadequate funding for more effective reforms.
  • Taking a step towards strengthening and preserving the public’s role in public education.

Share United Opt Out with your friends to spread the word.

What does the civil rights community have to say about assessments?

In May 2015, a dozen large national civil and human rights groups united in opposition of opting students out of annual tests. The media covered that story widely beginning in January. The stage was set for the marketing and political plan.

20987692_BG1The same level of coverage did not occur when over 200 civil rights and other community organizations signed a letter in July opposing the yearly high-stakes testing that continues to be central to the governing philosophy of schools under No Child Left Behind and is currently being continued under its reauthorization (ESEA, The Every Child Achieves Act, Students Success Act).

Under No Child Left Behind, parents with children in schools at the time of its imagesimplementation NEVER had their objections heard as our schools were made to conform with a law that infringed on our children’s individual right to a proper public school education as defined under our own state constitutions. We were denied our right to participate in decisions concerning our children’s education and many of our children suffered the effects of a curriculum narrowed by law. We were ignored while children, particularly in impoverished communities, were left further behind.

As a parent why should I opt my kid out?

I encourage all parents to help improve their own schools by educating other parents and educators. Many teachers themselves were schooled under the dictates of a standardized system and many administrators were indoctrinated into the test-based philosophy of No Child Left Behind. They don’t know any other way and, to date, most have not been willing to listen.

testsThey will listen when they are forced to acknowledge strong opposition to high-stakes testing. Negotiations across the country over the last three decades have failed to stop the standardization and privatization of our public school system.

Opt Out, Refuse, Boycott the tests to send a message that cannot be ignored.

Help your country get back on the right path.standardized-testing1

 

Education and the Economy

Our rulers in Washington D.C. are determining our national destiny based on their view of education and the economy. The D.C. know-it-all groups pay to have articles, blogs, and books written. They get promoted. They get in the news. They are the influential – pushers of their propaganda.

But I ask you – oh, wise readers of blogs – WHO is in the best position to know what will improve both education and the economy – those viewing the situation from their thrones or people on the ground? Consider this story and decide for yourself.

This was my reality check yesterday.

While packing my groceries into the trunk of my car at the employee-owned grocery store I frequent, I was thinking about what the parking lot was like during the pit of the Great Recession. … Homemade enchiladas were being peddled from both ends and the best corner for panhandling was never devoid of a person and a sign. … Yesterday, neither practice was in sight. Things are looking up!

That thought had no more than left my mind when I caught a glimpse of a young man walking past me. I can’t recall if I smiled at him or was just smiling at my own positive thoughts but the next thing I heard was “ma’am.”

This very slender, clean, polite young man with humble mannerisms and old-looking clothing proceeded to explain that he and his sister needed to get back to the farm they are living on outside of Parma, Idaho, which is a very small rural community that I later found out was roughly 28 miles from this grocery store. He didn’t think they were going to get all the way home without running out of gas.

He said they were getting about 350 miles out of a full tank and were now figuring that they only had about 27 miles left and the farm was on the other side of Parma. I asked him what his plans were for getting gas since there was no gas station in this area. He didn’t really know.

So rather than giving him money, I had them follow me. As I watched them in my rear-view mirror, it looked like they were looking for something in their vehicle.

When I got out at the gas station, the young man quickly held out a handful of change they must have collected from every corner of the old beater they were driving. This I do remember bringing a smile to my face as I passed by him saying, “Nah, that’s O.K. I’ll be right back.” I prepaid for enough gas to ensure they got home.

And there was enough time for a quick conversation at the pump.

“Do you have a job?” Yes, I’m getting paid $300 a week to work on this farm and they provide a house. But I haven’t gotten paid yet because my boss can only pay me when he gets paid.

“Seems like enough to get by on?” Yes, it is when they provide a house so I don’t have to pay any rent. And I just got my sister moved here so it’ll be….his voice trailed off ….. his sister sitting in the vehicle looking embarrassed.

“You’ll have to watch how you manage your money. Are you good at math?” No – and his eyes went down for the first time in our conversation.

“Did you graduate from high school?” No, I dropped out when I turned 17 and went into doing framing in Montana. I had to get started in life early but I looked into getting a GED at a community college once, but…

...yes...

…yes…

…. Gas was in; conversation was over. I extended my hand to this young man who was by no means a lazy beggar or a complainer. I felt the strength of his handshake and felt confident that it matched his resolve, and we parted ways; “I encourage you to pursue that diploma again.” – “I will.”

#####

Will it do any good to write to our leaders?

To you political rulers of education and the economy,

This young man of the Lost Generation doesn’t need your standards. This young man doesn’t need your high-stakes testing. This young man doesn’t need your accountability schemes. This young man needs a financial literacy course. He needs someone to assess his talents and the deficits in his education and help him fill the gaps. He needs a hand up. He needs a break. He needs a fair shot.

I don’t know what life dealt him – the reason he had “to get started in life early” – I didn’t ask. He had left it behind; that’s good enough. And he didn’t need to finish his sentence about how “it’ll be….” I know how that goes. I have heard it before from those in my hometown when they lost manufacturing jobs. I heard “Don’t worry. You know us. We’ll be O.K.”

We true Americans have plenty of GRIT. What we haven't gotten is a fair shot at education and the economy because the rules have been set by those who rule the world.

We true Americans have plenty of GRIT. What we haven’t gotten is a fair shot at education and the economy because the rules have been set by those who rule the world.

You D.C aristocrats, you want grit? Get off your damned thrones and come have a looks-see. We’ve got plenty of grit to be found. You don’t need to produce it in us. You need to quit theorizing, experimenting, and pocketing our hard-earned dollars.

You think you know best what our children need? You think you know better what this young man needs than the people around him?

Some days I wonder if I have it wrong. Not today – today, I know you people who own the world got it wrong if it is us you even care about.

60 minutes The Giving Pledge http://www.cbsnews.com/news/giving-pledge-new-billionaires-club/

Listen to why the people who own the world think they know best what to do “for us.”

#####

To the ordinary people fighting to take back America’s schools,

Please do. You can get it right when you quit playing follow the leader. Change the leaders!

Fixing Our National Accountability System: Part 1

The latest Marc Tucker publication from the National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE) is titled “Fixing Our National Accountability System.” I have so many issues with the title alone that it didn’t take long to decide that my responses would obviously require more than one blog.

First the words “Our National.” National means affecting the nation as a whole.

That IS the problem with our current U.S. education accountability law – No Child Left Behind (NCLB). That law put in place a test-based system that affected the whole nation in a negative way – no doubt about it.

Did it then go further and become a “federal” accountability mechanism? “Federal” means a union of states in which members agree to designate a central authority. Did NCLB do that? You bet it did! Our congressmen and women acted – and gave authority to the U.S. Department of Education to execute their law. NCLB is the federal education law of the land controlling the use of high-stakes standardized tests for “accountability” purposes.

And what about the word “accountability.” Mr. Tucker chose to use this definition; “Accountability: The obligation to bear the consequences for failure to perform.”

According to Mr. Tucker, “both Democrats and Republicans were angry with the nations teachers.” That’s how we got NCLB? That was America’s plan?

Teachers were always the target? I don’t think so; there is a much bigger target in “the plan” – but back to defining what Tucker is now talking about (or skirting around).

“Bear the consequences for failure”? To that I’d say, “you first Congress.” Congress should have corrected NCLB in 2007. Congress failed to perform. And it isn’t like there was a shortage of good suggestions that they were urged to act upon – since 2005.

And Mr. Tucker and his entourage have been pulling the strings for years by urging America to make a choice and threatening that it is tough choices or tough times. Consequences? There never will be consequences for all the big thinkers, planners, and propagandists. No responsibility; no consequences; no accountability.

"Mad Woman" found at http://fiftyfourandahalf.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/mad-woman.jpg and in homes across the country!

“Mad Woman” found at http://fiftyfourandahalf.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/mad-woman.jpg and in homes across the country!

As far as blogging about “Fixing” this mess created by Congress and the real movers and shakers in D.C., well, it will have to keep for another day. The steam coming out of my ears is fogging up my glasses.

Walk the Talk

After listening to two former commissioners of education Dr. Eric Smith of Florida and Dr. David Driscoll hired by Massachusetts after the “Grand Bargain,” I think we all —including these two leaders— need to step back a moment and listen to ourselves.

Since these two had the stage, let’s listen to them first.

The talk — The purpose of our public system is to provide opportunities to all kids. The walk — standards and measuring make the difference.

The talk — Libraries and librarians have proven their worth. The walk — standards and measuring make the difference; be data driven.

The talk — Good parenting and providing students with essential services when needed is a good thing. The walk — standards and measuring make the difference and we need to tone down the political rhetoric.

The talk — Time on task is important and we should understand how we are using our teaching time. The walk — standards and measuring make the difference; we will know how Common Core works in a couple of years.

The talk — Research is important. The walk — those that adopted Common Core should have read them before doing so. There should have been a process.

The talk — We need to get away from teaching to the test. The walk — STAY the course with Common Core and Smarter Balance testing.

Oh, one more…..The talk — Massachusetts is doing great on international tests. The walk — well, that’s the problem. How many students walked away never to be subjected to being measured again?

For me, the question left unanswered from listening to these two was; if Massachusetts is being held up as the gold standard of reform efforts and they “improved” their schools using tests only in 4th, 8th, and 10th grades, why are we still recommending standardize, high-stakes testing in every grade every year?

Welcome to my little corner of the world complete with reminders of all the solutions we should embrace. :-)

Welcome to my little corner of the world complete with reminders of all the solutions we should embrace. 🙂

More to consider tomorrow…and yes, I do remind myself with notes that I too need to hear myself.

Reformer, or Transformer?

To transform means to change the appearance, character of, or function of.  To reform means to make better. Now, what ARE we doing to our education system?

I saw problems in my local schools and I offered solutions. Is there a high poverty rate in my area? Yes, now 83% free & reduced lunch children. Could the solutions not be accomplished because of poverty? No. And let me give you an example.

When we were in the process of expanding into a brand new school building, our district was going to have empty classrooms. Having helped in first grade classes with 28 students and seen the behavioral distractions that then led to decreased instructional time, decreased personalized attention, and the creation of at-risk students — I didn’t give a damn what research said or didn’t say — it makes good sense to start kids off on the right foot! Race of life and all that, ya know?

So, I did my math and brought a proposal to the school board to decrease only first grade class size; not as an experiment, but because it was the right thing to do at the right time. Before this, limited facilities had always been the excuse for the crowded classrooms. Could we not afford to do it? No, we could at the time. “We” just chose not to. Proposal rejected; no explanation.

Enter what Diane Ravitch in Reign of Error called the “’reform’ agenda including high-stakes testing, test-based accountability, competition, and school choice.” Did these efforts make the public education system better? NO – they are not reforms. Did they change the appearance of the system? YES – it appears more dysfunctional than ever. Did they change the character of schools? YES – much more test-based. Did they change the function of the system? Let me answer using Ravitch’s words here: “What began as a movement for testing and accountability has turned into a privatization movement.” The function of policies and practices did change.

The people pushing the privatization movement are transformers, transforming public institutions into private profits.

I am a reformer. They have not earned the right nor deserve the privilege to wear that label. Reformers work to make things better, not destroy them.

Call them what they are - TRANSFORMERS.

Call them what they are – TRANSFORMERS.

 

Transformational change is not the change we need. STOP the Dismantling of the PUBLIC SYSTEM so we may begin to make things better.

Understand what reform is and is not.

All is Not Lost

Across the country, people are rising to the challenge of beating back wrongful “education reforms.” The movement against high-stakes testing got rolling with 545 local school boards in Texas adopting a resolution against standardized testing. Other states including Florida, Oklahoma, Ohio, and Virginia have followed suit with many parents joining in by opting their students out of the testing in states such as New York, Washington, California, and Colorado.

And from education funding to education “reform” laws, the fate of public education is being placed before voters through state ballot measures in numbers not seen for 20 years. My state of Idaho is one of those states. Much is at stake.

In general, our lawmaking process has been corrupted by money and our minds have in the past been swayed by propaganda. We have been used in ways we may not realize until it is too late. But even as we acknowledge that money is a very, very powerful influence, we need to place our faith in the American people that they will rise up to this opportunity to support public schools. All is not lost.

At a rally here in Idaho yesterday, these were some of the parting words spoken: “Support quality education in Idaho.”

And that is what will be extremely important. When we have defeated what we know is wrong, we must be there to promote and support what is right.

High Stakes

Through my 11 years of helping in classrooms, I saw with my own eyes the learning climate and conditions within my “In Needs of Improvement” schools. The children falling through the cracks were not going to be recovered by setting higher standards. The reasons they fell were not typically things to be diagnosed by a standardized test. And “high stakes” testing was something I could see for what it was.

For me, the standardized test with the highest stakes, ever, was the National Board of Veterinary Medicine Examination. I entered that room after having four years of instruction at a highly accredited university with highly trained and experienced instructors, a relevant and comprehensive curriculum, plentiful instructional materials, and facilities that facilitated learning in a climate conducive to it. Being an adult, success was totally on me.

So when high-stakes testing came before the Idaho legislature in 1999, testifying to the Joint Legislative Education Committee on behalf of my students was a no-brainer. There was and is nothing fair about holding students, teachers, or judging schools based on standardized tests when the conditions for teaching and learning have not first been met.

High-stakes testing — for reward such as with merit pay, or, punishment-driven such as with No Child left Behind, it doesn’t matter — it puts something of value at stake. It has a place, but, K-12 isn’t it!

Will we fight to keep public education publicly controlled?

Will we fight to keep public education publicly controlled?

Today, the heart and soul of public education is at stake.

The “Status Quo” of Reform

These two words “status quo” are tossed around frequently and conjure up some raw emotions for many who have tried, unsuccessfully, to improve their own schools. “Status quo” invokes visions of entrenchment on the part of administration, school boards, teachers, or, on the “other side,” the unions, education establishment, the politically powerful foundations, organizations, individuals, corporations, and their lobbying groups who pull the strings of education policy.

But if we all put aside our personal feelings a moment and think strictly about the big picture of “education reform,” then, it becomes clear what the status quo of reform efforts really is. Status quo literally means the current state of affairs.

Is America secure with the "status quo"? Do they know what it is?

Is America secure with the “status quo”? Do they know what it is?

For three decades, our education reform strategy has been based on high-stakes standardized testing. It is The Theory Behind No Child Left Behind.

The ideology wars — progressives vs. traditionalists, whole language vs. phonics, unions vs. anti-unionists — and the ongoing blame games would be of miniscule significance if we were focusing on what is truly important in an education reform effort — educating children. The status quo of reform has failed them miserably.

The status quo of education reform is test-based education.