Demanding End to 'Toxic Testing,' Teachers Call for Duncan's Resignation
The National Education Association (NEA) has approved a national campaign to roll back the “test blame and punish” policies that have dominated education policy in recent decades and have called for the resignation of Arne Duncan, the Secretary of Education, who the union says has spearheaded the Obama administration’s “toxic testing” push.
“The testing fixation has reached the point of insanity,” said NEA President Dennis Van Roekel in a statement put out by the group. “Whatever valuable information testing mandates provided have been completely overshadowed by the enormous collateral damage inflicted on too many students. Our schools have been reduced to mere test prep factories and we are too-often ignoring student learning and opportunity in America.”
Adopted at the NEA’s annual convention in Denver just before the holiday weekend, the proposal itself also stated that “the Department’s failed education agenda focused on more high-stakes testing, grading and pitting public school students against each other based on test scores” are the reasons the group is calling for the secretary’s resignation. Duncan has been the driving force behind the implementation of such policies under President Obama.
“The sad truth is that test-based accountability has not closed the opportunity gaps between affluent and poor schools and students,” added Van Roekel. “It has not driven funding and support to the students from historically underfunded communities who need it most. Poverty and social inequities have far too long stood in the way of progress for all students.”
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