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Monday, February 4, 2013

More Seattle Schools Join MAP Test Protest

Posted by on Mon, Feb 4, 2013 at 7:23 AM

The teacher rebellion against MAP testing that started at Garfield High School continues to grow. On Friday, 18 Ballard High School teachers signed a letter announcing their intent to boycott the "Measures of Academic Progress" testing, with more teachers expected to sign on this week. Also late last week, 22 staffers at Graham Hill Elementary School issued a letter complaining that MAP is "a very limited tool with a very high cost," and explaining the particular burden that it imposes in their own classrooms:

This year we have elected to give the MAP twice rather than three times. As an elementary school with limited staff to set up and proctor this test, these tasks have always fallen to specialists, since they are not tied to a classroom. Until this year, that has meant that the most vulnerable students with special needs have taken a back seat for testing – for nine weeks. This year we have a computer lab teacher to set up and proctor the test, taking the computer literacy education we have lacked for years off of the table for six weeks. For all too many of our students, school is the one place where they have the opportunity to use a computer.

... We strongly urge the Seattle School Board to direct District staff to discontinue the MAP and consult with teachers to find more appropriate and accurate measures of academic progress

My daughter attended Graham Hill, and while I haven't seen the list of signatories I'm sure I know most of the names. This is a strong, caring staff, and I trust their judgment. As should the district.

Full letter after the jump:

January 30, 2013


To the Seattle School Board and Superintendent Banda,


As Seattle Public School staff, we at Graham Hill Elementary stand in support of all school district staff choosing not to participate in the MAP. We are in agreement with the analysis and conclusion of the Garfield and Ballard HS staff. The MAP is a very limited tool with a very high cost.

The MAP can reveal, with less than complete accuracy, who is excelling and who is struggling academically. This information is already known by teachers by the end of September. The MAP has such high costs, and we do not get a high return.

This year we have elected to give the MAP twice rather than three times. As an elementary school with limited staff to set up and proctor this test, these tasks have always fallen to specialists, since they are not tied to a classroom. Until this year, that has meant that the most vulnerable students with special needs have taken a back seat for testing – for nine weeks. This year we have a computer lab teacher to set up and proctor the test, taking the computer literacy education we have lacked for years off of the table for six weeks. For all too many of our students, school is the one place where they have the opportunity to use a computer.

These are just some of the human costs. We all know that the monetary cost of this test is money desperately needed to enhance school programs. We urge the Board and superintendent to end the contract with NWEA. If we are going to use additional assessments beyond curriculum-based measurements, portfolio assessments, HSPE and MSP, then we need quality assessments that are aligned with our state's academic learning requirements. We strongly urge the Seattle School Board to direct District staff to discontinue the MAP and consult with teachers to find more appropriate and accurate measures of academic progress.

Respectfully,
21 members of Graham Hill Staff

 

Comments (3) RSS

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1
The Sacajawea Elementary School PTA also issued a statement of support to teachers boycotting the MAP.

There is unhappiness about this test all around and it is growing.
Posted by westello on February 4, 2013 at 8:35 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 2
MAP never was a good test, which is why most PTSA have never supported it, primarily on the parent side, where nobody could see any utility from it.
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on February 4, 2013 at 12:32 PM · Report this
3
how do I get involved in supporting this boycott?
Posted by BillSpiderman on March 16, 2013 at 3:23 PM · Report this

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