Lance Scranton: Testing the limits
March 19, 2013
Colorado tests students in selected grades each year to determine their knowledge in certain subject areas (science, math, reading, writing). Each student's score is recorded, reported and then measured against a state standard to determine if our schools are meeting the child's learning needs.
The tests are designed to measure student achievement objectively and without interference from any local bias by using a standardized format. Standardized tests are not without their faults, but in the grand scheme of things, we need to prepare our students for the reality of testing that they will face throughout their lives.
Most of us at one time or another had to pass some type of test to gain entry into a school, complete a training course, earn a degree or drive a vehicle.
We're often faced with a challenge of some type in order to advance our career or earning potential. It can be intimidating and stressful when we know that our lifestyle can be affected by how we score on tests that are designed to determine what we know.
What we know helps quantify our ability to perform within the scope of a selected task, and we take pride and breathe a sigh of relief when the test results come back in our favor.
Most tests are designed so that we can take them again and again until we show that we know what needs to be known at a desired capacity (driver's license, hunter safety, citizenship, etc.). Other tests measure our ability and then classify and quantify us into a group of comparable individuals for later determination (intelligence, blood, physical fitness).
Tests can take different forms, but to succeed they require our best effort, attention and an attitude of pride in ourselves and what we represent.
At least, that's what I think.