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The Warrior Messenger

The student news site of Woodbridge Middle School

The Warrior Messenger

The student news site of Woodbridge Middle School

The Warrior Messenger

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Is state testing beneficial to your education?

Student stresses over testing

As a middle schooler, we’re supposed to be learning to socialize, have different experiences, and find our inner selves.  With pretests, LinkIt, state tests combined, students are losing out on at least 16 full days of real educational opportunities.  These are days where we could be doing science labs, group discussion, and creative writing. We lose numerous opportunities just to take tests that only cause stress and agony on students. These tests don’t have a tremendous impact on our education, some students just aren’t good test takers or could be having a bad day. 

What does it really measure?

State testing isn’t beneficial to your education. Students can be in a substandard state of mind, yet they will be forced to take the test. Your intelligence shouldn’t be judged based on one test. In the article, “Why Standardized Tests Are Problematic” the author states, “students know that test scores may affect their future lives, they do whatever they can to pass them, including cheating and taking performance drugs… Standardized tests don’t value creativity. A student who writes a more creative answer in the margins of such a test, doesn’t realize that a human being won’t even see this creative response; that machines grade these tests, and a creative response that doesn’t follow the format is a wrong response.” The quotes show that students will do whatever they can even if it means hurting themselves just to pass a test that doesn’t express their full potential. 

Another article reveals that the test only highlights the students that are good at test taking. In the article, “Do Standardized Tests Improve Education in America” the author said, “Standardized test scores are easily influenced by outside factors: stress, hunger, tiredness, and prior teacher or parent comments about the difficulty of the test, …the tests only show which students are best at preparing for and taking the tests, not what knowledge students might exhibit if their stomachs weren’t empty or they’d had a good night’s sleep.” The article explains that students try to study but may lack sleep the night before, or they get hungry and can’t focus. Students go through many hardships outside of school that cause them to lose lack of focus. If someone isn’t a good test taker that shouldn’t have a tremendous effect on their education overall. 

Is state testing important?

Numerous people believe that we should have state testing. In the article, “The importance of State Testing”, the author states, “it can be an indicator of readiness for college-level work…state tests can be used by educators to recognize skill deficits or advanced mastery in a student… remedy deficits with new learning strategies or challenges.” The article conveys that it helps colleges and can help teachers know what they need to help students academic performance. However, state testing makes students extremely stressed out and can cause them to take performance enhancements that can put their health at risk. 

Should state testing be stopped due to a decline of educational time?  

State testing takes away time from students’ education time. In the state of New Jersey we spend over 360 minutes testing students for ELA and math. Wasting time on these tests will only lower students’ intelligence. In the article, “Why Standardized Testing Needs To Be Abolished” Isabel Comacho states, “Standardized testing leads to less time learning, a more narrow curriculum and more time overall taking tests. This disrupts school routines, lessens time teaching and learning.” This statement explains that if we as a society keep wasting time on state testing students will lose learning opportunities. 

Does state testing help students or harm their mental health?

During the time of state testing students stress levels tend to rise. The test has an effect on the brain and can higher the stakes of failing. In the article “Test-Related Stress and Student Scores on High-Stakes Exams” the author states, “…document that students’ level of a stress hormone, cortisol, rises by about 15 percent on average in the week when high-stakes standardized tests are given. 

In the article, “Tests and Stress Bias” Grace Tatte stated, “Stress and its effect on the brain … Children are affected by standardized testing, with some seeing their cortisol levels spike on testing days, and others seeing it drop, which might lead them to disengage.” This proves that stress will only increase in kids daily if we continue to have standardized testing. Tatte also stated,“A new study suggests that changes in levels of cortisol, a hormone associated with stress, during weeks of standardized testing hurt how students in one New Orleans charter school network performed — and kids coming from more stressful neighborhoods, with lower incomes and more incidents of violence, were most affected …family income tends to correlate with test scores may be because stress — both from the test and home environments — affects scores.” Stress not only can damage the students mental health and cortisol, but it can also lower their test scores. 

State testing doesn’t really have an impact on your education and should be stopped.

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