It's that time of the year where students are about ready to change their habits from sleeping in and skipping breakfast to having their parents set their alarm clocks and waking them up in preparation for those four letters that has caused more stress and turmoil than I've seen in my last ten years in education: CRCT.
Understandably, this test is a way to collect data from each and every student so that we can objectively assess many different things: how great their teacher was, how great the administration has been, and generally, what the overall school climate is in that community.
It has been without a question that because the game has changed to using the Common Core Standards, more and more heartache has been seen in both classrooms and carpools alike. I've seen parents both applaud and complain at the standards, I've seen different twenty different iterations of how to solve simple fractions that I learned to do with two steps, I've seen parents "save" kids from the piles of superfluous homework by either giving them a family homework pass or (I heard this on the radio) doing the homework for them. Either way, it's been quite a painful year.
My main concern is, and always will be the children. As a good parent, I'm sure that you want the best for your children. As a good community, we want to be represented as the best (especially here in Cobb County). However, at what cost does being the best come to for some of our children? Nothing pains me more than hearing a five year old complain of stomach issues, headaches or nosebleeds because of needing to perform. It's rather abrupt to have students go from perform in a lackadaisical manner to a more persnickety manner to compensate for what has not been expected in the last twenty years.
After this series of tests, I think there will be a gross re-evaluation of not only what we can expect from our students, but also from the adults who make decisions for these students.