Saturday, June 3, 2017

My Thoughts on End Of Grade Assessments (EOG's) by April Jones Lee


Here are my thoughts on EOGs (as someone who's taught taught both ELA and Math):

This time of year is so hard for children and for teachers.

I think about all the real growing my children have done. I think about how I have pushed students to understand and do more than they have before. I think about how hard I've worked and how hard most of them have worked.

And then we get the results back.

And I think about what I could've done differently to make them grow, to be "proficient". And I feel guilty for no reason because I've poured myself into my classroom, my plans, my kids. Many times I've done this at a cost to my own children.

And my kids feel defeated, mostly because this isn't the first EOG they didn't pass. Many of them have never passed these tests (or at least one of them). So this result just confirms what they already think: "I'm no good at . . ."

So then I think about it some more. When I have kids who understand my content (whether it's reading or math) on levels significantly below grade level, how is growth even going to show on an on-grade-level test? If we master long multiplication or division, how does this show on a test that asks students to approximate square roots. If we begin writing 2-step equations from word problems, how does this show on a test that wants them to write and solve multi-step word problems and graph them as linear functions?

I am not sure what the answer is, but I know it is not giving a grade-level test to kids who are three or four grade-levels behind.

And please don't be foolish and say that they shouldn't be in that grade. Some of them (actually, many) have already been retained in elementary school. And many of them are hardworking kids who haven't seen the fruits of their labor, so they have given up.

So in this season, I have decided not to blame teachers and not to blame kids. This hurts all of us. This is a problem of the system that desperately needs a solution. And in the meantime, it breaks my heart.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you. This a wonderful read and a wonderful and very truthful statement. I always enjoy reading your posts and this one especially. My children have done fine on one and scored low on another or high on all or Low, etc. I also have an Autistic child starting 3rd grade next year.

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