The Instigator
dan1
Con (against)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
ilovgoogle
Pro (for)
Winning
13 Points

Public High schools

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/23/2009 Category: Society
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,755 times Debate No: 9315
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (23)
Votes (3)

 

dan1

Con

Negative Constructive
Resolved: Public high school students in the United States ought not
be required to pass standardized exit exams to graduate.

Observation 1: Moral Obligation
In the resolution the word "Ought" is used to hold the resolution to a moral obligation. Meaning he is arguing that we are morally obligated to remove the necessity to pass exit exams in order to graduate. Now, in order for my opponent to uphold the resolution, he must do the following: 1) Prove his system of morality that obligates us to remove the necessity to pass exit exams in order to graduate. 2) Prove that removing the necessity to pass exit exams will be beneficial.

Burden: Since I am going to prove in my case how the public school system does not teach the students, even the most basic knowledge, the AFF must give an alternative to standardized tests. He must do this because we can not leave our current public school system this way.

Valued Premise: Quality Education,
Quality education is a key component for a nation's youth if a bright future is ahead. Research has shown that since 1983 10 million 12th graders were unable to read at a basic level, and 20 million could not do basic math, also 25 million did not know the essentials of US history. In 1995 nearly 30% of first time college freshman enrolled in at least 1 remedial course to compensate for a sub-par high school education. Because the public school systems do not teach properly we have to insert standardized tests into the system to make sure 12th graders are ready to graduate at the end of their senior year.

Valued Criterion: Encourage Public schools,
If we administrate standardized tests we can measure how good, or poorly a public school is doing. If there are failures the school will lose its funding, because we know that the school has not properly taught their student. With my VC we can adequately measure the school's performance. We are giving incentives to public schools to teach their students well, because with standardized test we can truly measure how a school is teaching, and if there are still failures the school will lose the funding it was getting.

Contention 1: Tests measure schools
Standardized exit exams provide a measurement of how well or how poorly schools are preparing their students. These exams serve as a guide to what needs to be improved within an educational system. Nothing can be improved without a measurement that determines whether it is getting better or worse. Standardized tests are needed to provide an objective measurement. Standardized tests are imperfect, but they can be reliably used to measure the most basic skills, such as how well a student can read do simple math, reading, and writing. Educational policy should take into account how well those basic skills are taught. They are reliable in the essence of measuring whether a person is functional in moving on in life with a proper education. Davenport community schools states on its website states the importance of standardized tests. 1) To report individual progress to students and their parents; Furthermore, standardized tests – and the results for schools and districts – have become more important in recent years with new requirements in both state and federal laws. The federal law, No Child Left Behind, outlines the degree of improvement that schools should make in student achievement on standardized tests each year. This federal law also stipulates the consequences for schools and districts that do not reach annual improvement goals.

Sub point A
Standardized exit exams are able to level the playing field of competing school systems. Although there will always be some sort of unfairness in these exams, they still provide the opportunity for different institutions to prepare students for the exam and the future as well.
ilovgoogle

Pro

I thank my opponent for creating this debate. It should be good practice for NFL. I will start by countering my opponents arguments then moving on my own contentions.
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"Valued Premise: Quality Education"
You have claimed the high schools do not teach properly then proceed to make up numbers out of thin air. See I can do that too: In 2000, studies proved that I am 10% more right then you are. You have not cited any of your sources and need to do so.

I will respond to my opponents second valued premise and contention 1 (they're the same) in my contentions.
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What is the point of school? To learn the last time I check. Learning is defined as: acquiring new knowledge, behaviors, skills, values, preferences or understanding, and may involve synthesizing different types of information. [1] Schools seek to achieve this through the classroom; however, possible. I believe standardized testing impedes on a schools ability to to just that: help students learn.
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[A] It's not fair to judge the ability of someone's entire academic career on whether or not they answer A, B, C or D on a test at one time. There is so much more to learning then that! What if you're a bad test taker? What if you got sick during the test? What if I have to go to the bathroom during the test? What if I'm just plain nervous? To know if you could pass or fail high school on the basis of 1 test it very intimidating to most students. To truly gauge a what a person has learned you must look at what they have achieved over the period of a course, not just 1 test.
[B] Standardized testing funnels money from other subjects. If we look to No Child Left behind as an example, like my opponent mentioned, we can see that since it's passage 22 percent of elementary school leaders surveyed reported a decline in their art and music instruction. [2] If I want to be a artist when I grow up I won't have the skills I need because it was cut from my school to increase math which I'd have little use for. This is not to say math is not important, but standardized testing that requires it to pass high school puts an overemphasis on it.
[C] High school exit exams have proven not to be any more beneficial then those not taking them in job readiness. Here are some highlights for a massive study done: "Young high school graduates who obtained their diplomas in exit exam states fared no better in the labor market than their peers who obtained their diplomas in other states. These findings held in states with minimum competency exit exams and in states with higher competency exit exams. They also held for students from different racial/ethnic backgrounds." If exit exams have no bearing a a student ability to succeed in a job, then why are we wasting time and money on them?
[D] We are wasting time and money on exit exams. Not only would we waste teaching time on taking a standardized test, but money as well. Consider the things that go preparing for a test and costs : Making the test (already costs thousands for many states), preparing for it (teachers must take time to be briefed on it, students also have to study (see point E for more info on that)), administering the test, (usually takes up a day), grading it (think about having to grade MILLIONS OF TESTS, we do have electronic machines, but almost always someone has to go over it for mistakes. I also takes away time that could be used for teaching.)) Here is a breakdown of 1 persons experience taking the SAT(s).
" * 10th grade: PSAT:
Cost to take: $10-$14
* 10th-12th grade: Advanced Placement Tests (5 total)
Cost to take: $135 each = $675 total
* 11th grade: SAT I (taken twice – I might be showing my age, but when I took it the full score was 1600, not 2400)
Cost to take: $25 each = $50 total
Cost to send top score to colleges (12 colleges) = $8 each = $96 total
Test-Prep: $0 – my high-school counselor somehow got me into a class that a prep organization was doing as a pro-bono project.
* 11th grade: SAT II (3 tests, each taken twice)
Cost to take: $25 each = $150 total
Cost to send 3 top scores to schools: $8 each = $18 total
Test Prep: $500-$1,000? I was sent to tutoring every day after school for a couple of months.
* Post-college: GMAT (taken twice)
Cost to take: $250 each = $500 total
Test Prep: ~$1,800 – this includes a formal 9 week prep class and a couple of additional workshops.
Adding up all the numbers… comes to out to around $4,000. Just on testing and test-prep alone. " [4] While this person clearly went above and beyond I think it give you a ball park of how much costs can add up.... And that's just on the student side
[E] Teachers and students teach and study to the test. This creates a tunnel vision mentality where only the info that's going to be on the test is important. When you teach to the test you leave behind critical thinking skills. Just asking someone to answer A, B, C, or D does require one to look at a piece of information critically, instead their thinking only need to graze the surface.
[F] There's a luck component. If I only have to answer A, B, C, or D and I fail by one question, but the guys next to me passes by one question because he "guessed right" is that really fair how does that demonstrate learning? This also helps refute your earlier point of grading teachers on the results of the test. Why should even some of how their grades be tied to luck?
[G] If we wish to catch to other nations in the international ranking then we need to ditch standardized tests. Many other nations such as Ireland and Iceland do not use standardized testing as a means of grading students, instead electing to use performance based criteria to grade students. The ironic part of the whole situation is that they still score higher then us on international exams. Combine this with the fact we spend $9,666 a pupil [5] which is less then Ireland, Iceland, and New Zealand, but still got outperformed on international standardized test. [6]
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Seeing and I only have 5 minutes left I will have to cut my contentions short.
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Standardized testing does nothing but hinder learning. Forcing students to pass one to graduate high school would be a disaster. The resolution is affirmed.
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Sources:
[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://www.washingtonpost.com...
[3] http://hsee.umn.edu...
[4] http://www.wellheeledblog.com...
[5] http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com...
[6] http://74.125.113.132/search?q=cache%3A-W3hHAMGAL8J%3Awww.ciaonet.org%2Fpbei%2Faei%2Foti%2Fhef02%2Fhef02.pdf+belgium+per+student+spending&hl=en&gl=us
Debate Round No. 1
dan1

Con

Thank you for responding. :)

My case:

VP: http://www.libertarianrock.com...
This is were I get my information from. You can extend my value premise. My opponent makes up a statistic that has no evidence. My opponent makes no rebuttal so my value premise must be looked to in the round.

I would ask my opponent that he would signpost where is was making arguments in his case. So by attacking his case, that is defending my value criterion, and contention 1.

Point A: Let me just say this, if a student can not handle a test, how are they going to handle life? Secondly the key is to allow retakes and to re mediate, to help students who struggle to succeed. Failure is a speed bump to success. This test ensures that the students have a quality education and they do not pass high school without the proper tools. If they are bad test takers, how will they take SAT's, if they can't handle the tests they wont be able to handle everyday situations.

Point B: He states that the tests take away from programs such as arts, well even this is bad, it does not matter. A real basic education is more important than just extra curricular activities. Point 2: If a kid really wanted to be an artist he would enroll in classes not involved with school, and would practice on his own.

Point C: Look to my VP: the public school systems don't teach right, and the students aren't ready for college. With the standardized exit exams, we can make sure that the students, know basic knowledge. "If exit exams have no bearing a a student ability to succeed in a job, then why are we wasting time and money on them?" Because they make sure that they have a quality education before the graduate.

Point D: My opponent states that the exams waste money, IT IS NOT A WASTE OF MONEY, it makes sure that the students have basic knowledge before they graduate. Look to my VP, those facts are appalling. Teaching the test is only a bad if there is a bad test. I'm arguing for a good test, not a bad one. One that requires basic knowledge. Turn: This will be good because the teachers are teaching necessary material. Grading: this is a moot point, a machine can grade. or the teachers can apply themselves.

Point E: I'm arguing for a critical thinking test. Agreed.

Point F: I use critical thinking. We can never stop luck, but it is a better method of our current public school system.

Point G: This is a copy and paste, I also read this article. So what, there is also countries that use standardized exams such as Finland, and they rank near the top of high students in the world.

My opponent does not state how he would change the public school system, and we can not leave it this way.
ilovgoogle

Pro

I thank my opponent for a quick response. First I will counter my rebuttals and contentions then move on to my closing statements for the round.

"VP: http://www.libertarianrock.com......
This is were I get my information from. You can extend my value premise. My opponent makes up a statistic that has no evidence. My opponent makes no rebuttal so my value premise must be looked to in the round."

My opponent takes his evidence from a website called libertarianrock.com. First of all, I cast doubt on the factuality of anything from a website with a clear slant to appeal to one type of party. Second of all, the evidence he sites is outdated and goes as far back as to 1960. Third, the website wants less government involved in schooling not more! Standardized testing for every high school would increase the size of the government. I made up the statistic: "In 2000, studies proved that I am 10% more right then you are." as a means of humor. I don't think you got the joke.

"I would ask my opponent that he would signpost where is was making arguments in his case."
I do. I use letters to separate my contentions throughout my arguments.

"Let me just say this, if a student can not handle a test, how are they going to handle life? Secondly the key is to allow retakes and to re mediate, to help students who struggle to succeed. Failure is a speed bump to success. This test ensures that the students have a quality education and they do not pass high school without the proper tools. If they are bad test takers, how will they take SAT's, if they can't handle the tests they wont be able to handle everyday situations."
That's the point. Life isn't a standardized test. There is no A,B,C, or D answer. How does a standardized test ENSURE that students have a quality education?

"If they are bad test takers, how will they take SAT's, if they can't handle the tests they wont be able to handle everyday situations."

Simply not true. How does my opponent respond to the fact that there have been MANY successful people that have dropped out of high school and went on to succeed in life? Andrew Jackson, considered to be one of greatest presidents dropped out of high school. J.R Simplot is a self-made agriculture billionaire and dropped out as well. Carl Linder? Marcus Loew? All dropouts that couldn't "handle" tests.[1]

"He states that the tests take away from programs such as arts, well even this is bad, it does not matter. A real basic education is more important than just extra curricular activities. Point 2: If a kid really wanted to be an artist he would enroll in classes not involved with school, and would practice on his own."

My opponent has admitted that standardized testing takes away from the arts and that this is bad. First off my opponent has called these " extra curricular activities" which is beyond wrong. "Arts and cultural industries generate $1 .2 billion in revenues, $413 million in wages, and 19,500 jobs, totaling 6% of all employment in the County" [2] Does that sound like a "extra curricular activity" to you? In today's economy kids need to build the skills for these jobs in high school and with standardized testing being a requirement this is going to be servilely limited.

""If exit exams have no bearing a a student ability to succeed in a job, then why are we wasting time and money on them?Because they make sure that they have a quality education before the graduate.""

Having a quality education means preparing for you the workforce!

"My opponent states that the exams waste money, IT IS NOT A WASTE OF MONEY, it makes sure that the students have basic knowledge before they graduate. Look to my VP, those facts are appalling. Teaching the test is only a bad if there is a bad test. I'm arguing for a good test, not a bad one."

There are other ways to see if someone has what you consider "the basic knowledge" before they graduate. Standardized testing is a poor way to measure someone's ability as I've stated and backed up with evidence throughout my entire argument. You claim you argue for a good standardized test, but that's the point, there is none.

"I'm arguing for a critical thinking test."
If you are then, I challenge you to find a standardized test that shows critical thinking skills.
Critical thinking is defined as: exploring questions about and solutions for issues which are not clearly defined and for which there are no clear-cut answers. [3]

"I use critical thinking. We can never stop luck, but it is a better method of our current public school system."
First off, congratulations on using critical thinking. I agree we can never stop luck, but we should seek to limit it. In most standardized testing there's a 25% chance you'll get it right, without even knowing any of the information. You claim that this is better then the current public school system, but that is false. In fact every state requires that you pass a standardized test to graduate. If you think our school system is so bad, then isn't standardized testing part of it? Here is the list of tests for each state: http://en.wikipedia.org...

"This is a copy and paste, I also read this article. So what, there is also countries that use standardized exams such as Finland, and they rank near the top of high students in the world."
It was not copy and paste first of all. I took information from the article and summarized it in addition to citing the original article.

"So what, there is also countries that use standardized exams such as Finland, and they rank near the top of high students in the world."
So what? That point was they DIDN'T use standardized testing and still when it came to an international standardized test they ranked higher then us! This was because they used performance based evaluations! Not to mention they spend less they we do on each student. We should seek to learn from these countries and implant a similar system.

"Standardized exit exams are able to level the playing field of competing school systems. Although there will always be some sort of unfairness in these exams, they still provide the opportunity for different institutions to prepare students for the exam and the future as well."
Since when are public schools competing? Not mention that fact you admit that standardized testing is unfair!

"My opponent does not state how he would change the public school system, and we can not leave it this way."

It's not my job to offer an alternative, but nevertheless I have. Using student portfolio reviews, end of course interviews, and projects are just some of the ways we can judge how much someone has learned.

Dropped:
My opponent dropped my point about the cost of standardized testing.
My opponent dropped my point about the fairness of judging someone on just 1 test.
My opponent dropped my point of teaching to the test.
My opponent dropped my point [G] entirely.

Closing Statement

The point of a school is to help students learn! Many schools have mission statements emphasizing this. My school has the mission statement: "Green Hope High School is a community that provides a quality education and inspires every student to soar to success." Standardized testing creates a false sense of quality education in the fact that it doesn't prepare you for the job market. [4] Success can't be judged on A, B, C, or D answer. Teachers need to individually evaluate students based on the criteria I've presented. Only then will students truly soar to success.

[1] http://www.education-reform.net...
[2] http://74.125.47.132/search?q=cache:UaHmTPZF3EoJ:bber.unm.edu/pubs/UNM_BBER_AbqBCo_A%26CIs_ES_Booklet.pdf+importance+of+arts&cd=7&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us
[3] http://aaahq.org...
[4] http://hsee.umn.edu...
Debate Round No. 2
dan1

Con

dan1 forfeited this round.
ilovgoogle

Pro

All my points stand while my opponents do not. The resolution has been more then affirmed. VOTE CON!
Debate Round No. 3
23 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Da_King 7 years ago
Da_King
ilovgoogle- funny thing about the new york times. so true.
Posted by Da_King 7 years ago
Da_King
I did not read the whole debate, but dan1, your contention 1 had nothing to do with the resolution. you talked about how the exams provide information for the government, but the resolution is if students should be required to pass the exams not whether or not exams should exist.
Posted by cjae92 7 years ago
cjae92
yes, i have a debate class. i rather enjoy it, too.
we also have an interp class.
butu i find the debate class much more intelligent and informative than interp.
even though i'm more of an interper that a debater.
but im trying to get back into the whole debate thing.
Posted by ilovgoogle 7 years ago
ilovgoogle
What make a source "reliable'? Who says Wikipedia is not reliable? The information they used was sourced. In fact it the page cited 24 links are sources. Look for yourself: http://en.wikipedia.org...

I'd argue that's more reliable then the New York Times.

In other news, you have a debate class? Lucky.
Posted by cjae92 7 years ago
cjae92
You make a good point.
However, you still should not have used it.
It is well-known as an unreliable source.
My debate coach refuses to let us use it.
If we use it in a speech, we get a zero.
And I do agree with the fact that anyone can make a website, but that's why you should only use websites that are well-known for being reliable. or use reference books. or newspapers.
Posted by ilovgoogle 7 years ago
ilovgoogle
I agree with you, but I think your missing the point of why I used it. I used it to just show the different tests that states have. Anything on the internet is not really a reliable site, since there's little to no regulation. Anyone may be able to edit Wikipedia, but anyone can make a website as well.
Posted by cjae92 7 years ago
cjae92
WIKIPEDIA IS NOT A RELIABLE SOURCE.
This fault can be used to prove an entire case false.
ANYONE CAN EDIT WIKIPEDIA.
My advice:
FIND NEW SOURCE.
and don't EVER use wikipedia!
Posted by ilovgoogle 7 years ago
ilovgoogle
Save it for the debate.
Posted by dan1 7 years ago
dan1
How did u attack my contention 1
Posted by KeithKroeger91 7 years ago
KeithKroeger91
Public education sucks.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Koopin 6 years ago
Koopin
dan1ilovgoogleTied
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Vote Placed by LDdebaterCG 7 years ago
LDdebaterCG
dan1ilovgoogleTied
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Vote Placed by ilovgoogle 7 years ago
ilovgoogle
dan1ilovgoogleTied
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