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October 18th, 2012, 12:25 PM
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: In my house :p
In Ohio you're required to do either the tests or send in portfolios. However in most districts sending in the portfolios is akin to nailing jello to a tree. You won't be successful no matter how many times you try.
There are some districts not as bad, but for the most part, they make it beyond difficult. It's not worth the hassle.
So we do the tests. I'd likely do them anyway though. I like knowing where the kids stand outside of my own teaching. I can grade them until the cows come home, and teach them all I know being confident they know what they are doing based on how they perform here. The real test, as I see it, is whether or not that knowledge carries over into other situations(and if not, then we get to the why/how of it all). In this case, whether or not they are ABLE to take the tests in general. I don't necessarily just look at the scores and say "oh, nope, you fail" or "oh awesome you know it all", or anything like that, though. So for me, pass or fail doesn't matter as much as how they feel while taking the tests, how confident they are at being able to use what they know, things like this. The numbers, ie scores, are important but they just play one role in the whole thing.
Not sure that makes much sense to anyone but me since most think the tests are a direct indicator of what they know. I look at it as though it's more of a good indicator of what they can recall outside of their learning environment, instead.
I'm also fairly certain you're not allowed as a parent, regardless of licensing, to administer the tests yourself. I can't recall if it's actually in the "rules" or not though, been a while since I looked. We have an umbrella school that does the testing at a local hotel.
Which makes perfect sense to me, since it's not the same as a quiz, or final, or something. I wouldn't administer them myself anyway, it would be the same as any other test/quiz/final we do here at home, which defeats the purpose of taking them(for us) in the first place.
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