If you’re a parent of an elementary aged kid, you’re well aware that today is Math TAKS day. There’s so much hype surrounding the test, you would think that it’s the MCAT.

My wife is a third grade teacher and my son is a third-grader so I see the pressure that comes from both sides of the desk. The kids are pumped and drilled like they’re preparing for an academic decathalon and the teachers are prodded and pressured like the fate of the school depends on the results (which isn’t too far from the truth).

So, my question of the day is this: do two days of testing really measure what our kids have learned over the year with any accuracy?

In my opinion, the answer is no. I think the TAKS is an effective measure of how well we teach our kids to take tests and in some cases, how effective testing concessions are for kids who are “troubled”. For example, an acquaintance of mine has a son who has ADHD (a quick aside, you notice how everyone now has medical labels firmly affixed to them? When I was a kid, they just called them “little shitheads”) who is, let’s put this delicately, a frickin’ moron. Because he’s a moron, he gets special concessions during the test. He takes each part over two days, instead of one; he’s in a room by himself so that he’s not distracted by things like “people breathing” and stuff. Anyway, he scores a 100 on his TAKS test. There’s no way this kid is any smarter or more educated than 99% of the rest of kids in Texas. A perfect score from a little troglodyte who will probably drop out of school at 15 and lead a life sucking on the teat of society.

What do you think of the heavy emphasis on this one test?

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