Stop High-Stakes Testing: An Appeal to America's Conscience

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Stop High-Stakes Testing: An Appeal to America's Conscience is a timely and compelling book that argues that closing America's achievement gap cannot be accomplished until equality gaps in school, home, and neighborhood are addressed and actions are taken to close them. The authors define corrective justice as a national commitment to create equal opportunities for all public school students who must take the same high-stakes tests. Tests qualify as "high stakes" when student performance is used to deny promotion to the next grade, to withhold a high school diploma, to label schools and children "failures," to determine if teachers and administrators keep their jobs, or to decide if schools get more funding. The objectives of corrective justice are affordable housing with reliable running water and electricity; employment for parents and guardians to make a living wage; top-notch tutors for all children who need them; equity in school buildings, personnel, and resources; adequate medical and dental care for all students; and violence-free communities and home lives. These objectives are appropriate in a nation where children recite the words "with liberty and justice for all" at the start of each school day. The authors argue that until corrective justice has been established, high-stakes testing in public schools must be discontinued.

About the Author:
Dale D. Johnson is professor of literacy education at Dowling College

About the Author:
Bonnie Johnson is professor of human development and learning at Dowling College

About the Author:
Stephen J. Farenga is professor of human development and learning at Dowling College

Aboutthe Author:
Daniel Ness is associate professor of human development and learning at Dowling College

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Editorial Reviews

Teachers College Record
Overall, the book is well-written, conscientious, sound and responsible.
Kathleen Schlichting
This is an unforgettable and inspiring book that expands the reader’s awareness and understanding of many of the issues and controversies surrounding high-stakes testing in such powerful, alarming and enlightening ways. It is a touching, yet startling, look into the lives of the ‘excluded children’.
October 2008 American School Board Journal
The authors call for corrective justice—a sustained national commitment to eliminating the class differences that have stacked the deck against America's poor and minorities.
CHOICE, April 2009 - M. J. Garrison
Highly recommended.
Delores B. Malcolm
This volume should bring high-stakes testing to the forefront of political discussion. The authors present a convincing case that documents the inequalities in educational communities that serve the included and excluded classes. The closing pages delineate what we all know should, can, and must be done to rid our schools of a stacked deck against children of poverty.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742559387
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 7/12/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 6.06 (w) x 9.03 (h) x 0.54 (d)

Meet the Author

Dale D. Johnson is professor of literacy education at Dowling College. He was a professor at the University of Wisconsin for 20 years, served as the Dean of the College of Education and Human Development at the University of Louisiana at Monroe, spent several years as an elementary and middle school teacher, and is a past president of the International Reading Association. He is the author of 15 books, including High Stakes: Children, Testing, and Failure in American Schools, 2nd Edition (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006) and Trivializing Teacher Education (Rowman & Littlefield, 2005). Bonnie Johnson is professor of human development and learning at Dowling College. She has taught at all levels from preschool through graduate school. Dr. Johnson has been awarded the Distinguished Teacher of Teachers Award by the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her most recent books are High Stakes: Children, Testing, and Failure in American Schools, 2nd Edition (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006), and Trivializing Teacher Education (Rowman & Littlefield, 2005). Stephen J. Farenga is professor and former chairperson of the Department of Human Development and Learning at Dowling College. He has taught science for 15 years at the elementary and secondary levels, served on the Commissioner's Advisory Council on the Arts in Education in New York State, and established an acclaimed educational research clinic. He is a contributing co-editor of "After the Bell" in Science Scope and is a general editor of the Encyclopedia on Education and Human Development published by M.E. Sharpe. His most recent books include Trivializing Teacher Education (Rowman & Littlefield, 2005) and Knowledge Under Construction (Rowman & Littlefield, 2007). Daniel Ness is associate professor in the Department of Human Development and Learning at Dowling College where he teaches courses in mathematics curriculum and instruction and cognitive development. He has taught mathematics at all levels, an

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Table of Contents

Foreword     vii
Acknowledgments     ix
Introduction     1
High-Stakes Testing: A Brief History     5
Chronic Racism     31
The Excluded Class: Poverty, Race, and Social Class     53
Health Issues     71
Violence and Safety Concerns in the Community, the School, and the Home     87
School Funding Inequities     103
The Tutoring Industry     125
Life Experiences     141
Afterword     161
Index     167
About the Authors     177
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