Dying student has to prove he can’t take state test

I came across this article yesterday in my Facebook news feed and was in shock! http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/05/ethan-rediske-standardized-test_n_4732120.html

First I want to send my deepest sympathy to the family.  I can’t begin to imagine their grief and yet they went through this multi-step process to keep his teacher from being penalized.  They show a respect for teachers that it seems so few do these days, or at least that so few do publicly these days.  They are aware that this teacher’s pay is tied in part to student performance, something I object to already as I posted in Teacher Merit Pay on February 2.

The thing that has struck most teachers as unfair and unrealistic since the inception of NCLB is the testing and expectations of students with any number of disabilities to perform the same way that students without those disabilities.  I’ve had the discussion with educators of several levels: classroom assistants, special education assistants, special education teachers, classroom teachers, administrators.

I don’t understand how politicians who have never taken so much as one education course, who have never spoken to educators can make laws like this.  The fact that is was the state department of education insisting on all these layers in the case of this child is just infuriating.  I know they are probably just trying to cover their rear ends making sure no one gets out of taking the test that is capable of it, but why so many layers?  There has to be a simpler solution to this.  I know that Missouri, my state, has an alternate version of the state test that they give to certain special education students, however I’m not sure what it takes for children not to have to take it at all.  Time to do some more research into my own state’s standardized testing requirements, I’m loathe to think that something like this situation could happen here but as don’t know any different I want to find out.


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