Ten Doís and One Donít About the SAT

1. Do: Note that the SAT only really measures social class (zip code), race, and sex. The better your parental income, the better your score. The test is rigged. The people giving it are cheats. 

2. Do: Recollect that the SAT is, first, a test about how you feel about the person administering the test, and how you feel about your surroundings. If you test in a place surrounded by grass and trees and chirping birds, you will do better than a person whose birthright is to school across broken sidewalks covered with used syringes and crushed crack-pipes.

3. Do: Remember that the SAT is, second, a literacy test. If your way of reading and writing matches that of the people who wrote it, Cool Beans! You win! If not, you lose. 

4. Do: Know the history of the SAT, the mother of all the tests. It was written by people who believed that disabled people, black people, Hispanic people, and other people of color were genetically inferior, whose research was used by the Nazi's to prove that Jews were "life unworthy of life." The tracking that occurs because of the SAT has a direct link to fascism.

5. Do: Understand that the SAT is designed to measure people, with razor-sharp precision, and to lock down their futures. It is a life and death instrument. It was used to guarantee draft deferments to the wealthy during the war in Vietnam. Racist tests mean racist death. 

6. Do: Recall that up to 40% of teaching time in some schools is spent teaching to standardized high-stakes tests like the SAT.

7. Do: Grasp that standards and high-stakes tests are designed to de-skill teachers, to create an employee-boss relationship between educators and students, to regulate what is known and how people come to know it, and to pit people against one another, and school against school, community against community-at odds with all of the research on learning that says it is about making connections.

8. Do: Comprehend the social and economic context of the situation that causes test-mania: rising inequality and deepening segregation by class and race. Masters do not want Slaves to notice inequality. Masters do not want Slaves to ask: Why is there inequality? Instead, Masters give SAT tests to prove that inequality is a product of natural science. That is a Master's lie. Only a foolish Slave thinks the Master's test can be tricked. The trick is to abolish the test, and the Master-Slave relationship. 

9. Do: Remember that there are many better ways to assess the progress of a student's work: authentic assessment over time. We do not judge baseball players on a single at-bat, or on a day's performance, but over years. If there was anything honest about the tests, students would be treated similarly. 

10. Do: Consider that more than one billion dollars will be spent on high-stakes standardized tests in 2001. What would that do for books, supplies, and lower class size in public schools?

Don't: Submit yourself or your child to the abuse that is high-stakes standardized testing.

One more Do: Join the Rouge Forum. We are on-line. 
 

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