Thursday, January 10, 2013

Garfield Teachers Say No to MAP

In what is a major step, the teachers of Garfield High School will be holding a press conference today to announce they will not give the MAP test.  From the press release:

The teachers contend that it wastes time, money, and precious school resources. 

            “Our teachers have come together and agree that the MAP test is not good for our students, nor is it an appropriate or useful tool in measuring progress,” says Kris McBride, who serves as Academic Dean and Testing Coordinator at Garfield.  “Additionally, students don’t take it seriously.  It produces specious results, and wreaks havoc on limited school resources during the weeks and weeks the test is administered.”
Refusing to administer a district-mandated test is not a decision the school’s teachers made casually, or without serious internal discussion.
            “Those of us who give this test have talked about it for several years,” explained Mallory Clarke, Garfield’s Reading Specialist. “When we heard that district representatives themselves reported that the margin of error for this test is greater than an individual student’s expected score increase, we were appalled!”  
After the affected faculty decided unanimously to make a stand against the MAP test, they told the rest of Garfield’s faculty of their decision. In a December 19 vote, the rest of the school’s teachers voted overwhelmingly to support their colleagues’ refusal to administer the test. Not a single teacher voted against the action. Four abstained from voting. the rest voted to support it.
I will be attending the press conference so more to come.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Awesome!

HP

Anonymous said...

Oh, bravo! My son attends GHS -- think I will be dropping them an email to thank them for taking this stand. I hope more schools will follow their lead!

- Happy parent

Kate Martin said...

Nice!

Mary Griffin said...

Good for the Garfield teachers!

Anonymous said...

I am so impressed by the teachers at this school for taking a stand on this. My kindergartner had to take MAP 3x last year and I felt like it was a complete waste of her time.

-More Recess/Less Testing

ArchStanton said...

Well that's certainly a 'shot across the bow'. Could it be the first of many?

mirmac1 said...

Maybe the board will take this as an opportunity to dump this MAP crap.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to Garfield teachers. This is awesome, and I hope it will give other schools the courage to follow the lead.

Tests are just starting up at my kid's middle school.

-Yay for Garfield

Kristin Bailey-Fogarty said...

Well done Garfield. The MAP is a meaningless test educators have no way to prepare kids for. It's a test that most schools, like mine, don't even have the tech capacity to administer without a huge disruption to learning. It's not an assessment that's worth our time and money. I support Garfield's decision as an SPS teacher and parent.

Anonymous said...

Way to go Garfield teachers. What courage!
-Impressed

hschinske said...

That's great! Even back when I thought the MAP might work out to be useful in elementary and middle school, it didn't seem to me to have enough oomph at the upper end to be much good in high school, and I couldn't see the sense of administering it at that level.

Helen Schinske

Anonymous said...

Hurray for more teaching and learning time. Way to go SPS schools, now that one school started all the others could follow GHS!
HIMS parent (where the winter MAP testing will take place for 6 weeks!)

Anonymous said...

Hallelujah.

DistrictWatcher

Anonymous said...

How do we get the other schools to follow this example? How can we support Garfield? MAP is a waste of money and instructional time. I would love for our K-8 to follow this lead. I would love to see an online letter of support for Garfield's decision that allows parents to sign their names, also in support, and their school name.

-Show me the MAP money, and put it in the classroom

Mark Ahlness said...

I hope people realize the difficult hard work this took, to say nothing of courage, for an SPS staff to come out together like this - against a district mandated assessment.

Last year Ballard HS staff came up with an innovative way staff could be "in" the PTA but not support the current WAPTA stand on charter schools. I know other schools looked at that model.

Seattle's teaching corps is strong, full of teachers who understand the big picture, and care. I think they have had enough of the insanity. I hope the courage of the Garfield Staff inspires others to follow their consciences, too.

suep. said...

Thank you, Garfield teachers, and bravo!

15 Reasons Why the Seattle School District Should Shelve the MAP® Test—ASAP

suep. said...

@ Anonymous at 4:44 -- Great idea! Why don't you create an online letter/petition? I'm sure many of us would sign it.

Anonymous said...

How can we support Garfield?

If you don't find any value in the MAP results, opt your child out of MAP.

-parent

Anonymous said...

Most of the problems with MAP are also applicable to MSP.

Anonymous said...

There is a Change.org petition started. Sign and pass along!

http://www.change.org/petitions/seattle-public-schools-support-garfield-high-school-teachers-refusing-to-administer-the-map

CWright, Parent of an SPS 9th grader

Anonymous said...

Educational Backwater? Or Principled Educational Leaders taking a stand for students and parents against data-driven madness and absurdity? WSDWG