Keep your kids home during the Common Core AZMerit test!
Arizona will be giving the Common Core test the AZMerit starting next week. By now all schools have exact scheduled dates when they will administer the AZMerit writing, reading, and math portions of the test. They also have a scheduled “make-up” date for those kids who are absent for any portion of the test.
Due to the lack of an adequate amount of computers, most schools doing the computerized version of the AZMerit are giving the test over the entire month of April with a make up week the first week of May for those who missed any portion of the test.
Most likely each grade level has a different week to take turns using your school’s allotment of computers to complete each section of the test, which takes a total of three days. One day is for the writing portion, and two days are set aside for the reading/math portions. They will take the reading part 1 in the morning of one day and the math part 1 in the afternoon. The next day they will take the reading part 2 in the morning and take the math part 2 in the afternoon.
If your kids’ school is taking the paper version of the test, then most likely the entire school will take the test during the same one week period as they did with the AIMS. Many schools in AZ are taking the paper version of the AZMerit since they lack the technology necessary for the computerized version of the test.
Schools must administer the statewide test to kids that show up but parents are under no legal obligation to have their kids tested. Many schools are citing the Attorney General’s office opinion that school’s cannot let kids opt out of statewide testing. That applies to the schools only.
Keep your kids at home on the test dates and the make-up dates. Also, instruct the teacher and principal that your kid be permitted to call home should the test be administered at any other date contradicting your desire for your kid not to take the test.
A statewide test should take a minimum of one year to write, align, field test, analyze, and validate. AZ has only been working on this test for a couple of months. We do not know what type of questions are on the test nor do the kids have the necessary skills to take the test in most cases.
In addition, AIR, which administers the AZMerit test is a behavioral and social science research company. We don’t know what kind of behavioral data will be pulled from your child.
AIR tests, like the AZMerit, have had massive technology problems in Florida this year and in Minnesota in the past.
As a teacher I know that even one word said in frustration can have a devastating effect on a kid’s self confidence as a learner and as a person. This test will take at least 12 hours to take all of the different sections. Your kids are being thrown to the wolves for 12 hours to take an ill prepared test and could have a devastating impact on their self confidence.
Don’t assume that the school, teachers, and administrators are the enemy, many agree with you in wanting to refuse the AZMerit test.
Many, many teachers and administrators do not want to give this test as it amounts to educational malpractice. However, under their contracts, they are bound to implement the State Board of Education policies including statewide testing. They will have to give the “company line” that if your kid shows up to school they are required to give the test.
Respectfully, is not the teachers’ job to be YOUR kids’ chief protector and educator, that is the parents’ job. Teachers and administrators should not have to risk losing their jobs or be pushed to become martyrs to do what they think is best for your child. That is the parents’ job, that is YOUR job.
Reclaim your parental authority and keep your kids at home on their test and make up dates. It is your choice and your responsibility.