It's too bad that more teachers can't...or won't...stand up to the damage that is being done to our students in the name of "accountability" or "standards."
Most of us can't afford to go two weeks without pay...or risk losing our jobs. On the other hand, when you realize what this is doing to our students - the long term damage to the children who are most vulnerable - we ought to all feel a twinge of guilt for just "closing our classroom doors" and going on as if nothing is wrong.
So...Carl Chew is doing what many of us, for whatever reason, aren't doing. He is putting his money where his mouth is:
• No more giving tests which are used for punishment instead of diagnosis
• No more sitting idly by while the Bush administration gives preferential treatment to "educational" materials made by friends and relatives
• No more watching students take tests which are inappropriate to their development
• No more tacit agreement that high stakes testing is equal to accountability
• No more silence against those who would destroy the nation's public school system -
• No more punishing children and schools for the failure of the country to reduce poverty
• No more going along with state and federal governments which, through ignorance or maliciousness, are killing teaching and learning
First we have an article from Seattlepi.com
Seattle teacher penalized for refusing to give WASL
Second - Carl Chew's statement provided to Seattlepi.com as to why he refused to give the tests
Carl Chew's statement on the WASL
Third...his article, "Before the Big Test"
Finally, here is his intro to "Before the Big Test" in which he tells why he has done what he has done...
I teach 6th grade science at Eckstein Middle School in Seattle. I have let my administration know that I will no longer give the WASL to my students. I have done this because of the personal moral and ethical conviction that the WASL is harmful to students, teachers, schools, and families. I will not delve further into my reasons because so many others have already done that clearly and thoroughly for me. I will keep you posted as to what happens.