Abby Rappaport is one of our best education journalists, and she is mostly covering Texas politics these days.
In this article, she explains the escalating revolt against testing in Texas, where it all started.
The bottom line: Texas has been obsessed with testing for the past two decades, and people are just plain sick of it. The last legislature cut $5.4 billion from the schools’ budget, but managed to find $500 million for Pearson. Abby estimates that in the next few years, Pearson will collect over $1 billion from Texas taxpayers.
That’s a lot of money by anyone’s reckoning.
The school boards are sick of it. More than 80% have passed resolutions against high-stakes testing.
Parents are sick of it. Legislatures are getting complaints in the grocery store and wherever they run into parents in their district.
Happily, Texas Republicans are sick of all the testing. Many come from small towns and rural areas and their constituents are button-holing them. They don’t want to tear up their local public school and close it down because of test scores.
Last September 30, I spoke to a joint meeting of the Texas Association of School Administrators and the Texas School Boards Association. I got a wonderful, wild, Texas-size reception. They don’t like what’s going on. They talk to their legislators. Nobody had a good word for the reign of Pearson.
So, please, all eyes on Texas. Let’s all cheer for the testing revolt that’s growing there by the hour.