The Instigator
Wyattcodered
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points
The Contender
Sardukar
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points

Should Schools have (mandatory) Standardized testing?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Wyattcodered
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/6/2017 Category: Education
Updated: 7 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 707 times Debate No: 102922
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)

 

Wyattcodered

Con

I am the con side, I will argue that schools should not do standardized testing.

Debate will work like this

1st round Pro states position and first argument
2nd round I respond and sate first argument
3rd round 2nd position for each side
4th no new argument just rebuttal to the first two
Sardukar

Pro

I think I can do this lol. I'll be arguing why the standardized testing of a students is beneficial to both students and faculty in assessing the needs, strengths and weaknesses of both. That is to say that I believe standardized tests should not be used in the passing and failing of a student per se but are valid tools for figuring out what level the student is at. They should only be used in assessment and not much else.

1. Standards need to be maintained.

Testing is done to ensure that the student understands what the teacher is teaching. Without testing it would be almost impossible to make sure the student had a firm grasp of the material.

This mirrors how the real world operates. Lets first look at the requirements to be an automotive technician.

From "British Motor Car Distributors"

Automotive Technician Job Requirements

High School diploma
Must have a valid driver"s license
Ability to read and comprehend written instructions and information
Knowledge in all aspects of automotive technician repair and maintenance
A fast learner with excellent oral and written communication skills
Excellent Customer Centric Service Skills
Ensures Customer Vehicles are kept clean and treated with respect
Must be a helpful Team Player
Maintain a neat, clean and orderly work station

Now you will notice a few vague requirements, "helpful, team player, customer service skills, blah blah". But you will also see things like has a drivers license, has a high school diploma, knowledge in all aspects of automotive repair etc. These requirements are standardized for the purpose of just getting your foot through the door. They represent the bare minimum of what is expected. If one did not fulfill "Knowledge in all aspects of automotive technician repair and maintenance" there is a great likelihood the one would come across an automotive problem they have no idea how to solve and it is their responsibility to solve it. If they shirk the "Ensures Customer Vehicles are kept clean and treated with respect" requirement and dirty up the vehicle they are supposed to respect the customer is a lot less likely to do business with the technician in the future.

Without some sort of basic standards the whole profession would fall apart and I mean this across all professions, not just mechanical.

Acquiring a driving license requires a standardized test showing one can operate an automobile without posing (to much xD) of a threat to other drivers on the road. A drivers license shows that for the most part this individual understands and will follow driving safety standards. When those standards are followed it is very rare for an accident to occur.

2. Standards can be something to shoot for, a realistic goal

Let's relate this to the classical vision of what school is supposed to be about, a place to learn and grow as an individual.

I will use the example of piano school for this. Now suppose you have 10 students all being taught how to play the piano. Some are quick in understanding the basics other are taking a little more time. The standardized test playing twinkle twinkle little star is coming up. 7 pass, 3 fail. Those 3 that fail are now given the special attention they need to develop and now they know which direction to aim for. If that test did not exist those 3 would have fallen further and further behind and perhaps would never have learned the song. Being left behind is a distinct possibility without proper testing.

Now I understand two opposing points this brings up. 1) the teacher should simply know which kids need help and which don't and 2) fail is a strong word and implies losing to someone that passed said test.

To the first point I would say not every teacher has the ability to know which students are where along the curriculum. This problem only increases with the number of students in a class. Standardized testing give a quick run down of what a student does and does not know in comparison to whatever norm the test expects. It's a road map of sorts and sometimes a kid will get stuck at a drive though diner. With the map you know where the kid is.

With the second point I say that idea more has to do with the competitive environment a kid is put in rather than what standardized testing is supposed to be about. Maybe grades should not be made public knowledge and should be seen only by teachers, but that's another debate really lol. It's not standardized testings fault that the results are publicly available is all i'm getting at here.

But ya I think that's a good start for me lol.

Your turn to take the shot.

Make it count :p
Debate Round No. 1
Wyattcodered

Con

Thank you for accepting the debate,

I will first start with my thoughts on you two points then move to my thoughts.

in your point 1) you bought up that standards need to be maintained and gave a example of Automotive Technician (Job). Jobs have to maintain standards in order to keep a balance throughout. Jobs maintain a standard to keep the workforce focused and on track. Schools have standards for their students to follow by, including rules and class grades. If a student does not attend the school in states like Texas his parents must go to court in answer why. There are many standards the kid has to do which induce rules, showing up, class precipitation , and grades. Basically their are standards outside of mandatory testing to show a students success.

In your second point brought up goals are something to shoot for. First I would say that American school system had failed in keeping the students what failed and giving them more attention. For the purpose of your example I would consider it a test not a standardized test. There is a difference, think of it in this way there are plenty of testing in public school. Including test/quiz grades of the unit, this is not the same as a test provided by the state to judge the students learning.

My first point follows as this Testing and Standardized testing are not the same. As I hinted above I am a fan of test for the unit learned. This gives a teacher a understanding of who needs what in that unit. What I'm not a fan of is a test provided by the state to judge a students learning. The student even if he/she bombs the test does not get affect by the test itself In grades 7-9 sometimes 10th. Its the goal of the student to pass the test but it does not do anything to the student if he or she failed as far as the school is concerned. If the student does bad its up to the parents to decide what is best for their student. The only test what counts for this is SAT and ACT in what collages look at. This also has a certain limit to it,. A example of this includes going into a college when sending in the admission paper you have to put your SAT score in if that's the route you take, after that the college looks for your extra activities. Some colleges and high school teachers advice to get as many extra activities instead of a high SAT score. Of course every college is different and looks for different things but its starting too become more of a trend.

2) this leads onto my second point as the world gets bigger their are more ways to get into collages then ever before. The standardized testing is starting to become out dated while at the same time still sticking around. Some more options include getting good grades at comity 2 year college before a collage. Most of the time this includes above a B and sometimes a C overall in the classes you take. That includes 1,770,000 million students who were home schooled alone in the us according to the US Department of Education. Home schooling ha become a booming industry as parents fell the public school education has let them down. Their are many more ways to get into college then to just take and have as your main focus staderized testing.

https://www.hslda.org...
https://www.usnews.com...
Sardukar

Pro

The definition of standardized test I am operating under is from the sylvan learning glossary "A standardized test is a test that is administered and scored in a consistent, or "standard", manner. Standardized tests are designed in such a way that the questions, conditions for administering, scoring procedures, and interpretations are consistent"

No state involvement is necessarily included, though it can be.

For the sake of argument however i'll drop the popular definition and make up my own. I hope this will clear up any confusion.

"A standardized test is a "standardized test" paid for by a state department to assess the schools ability to teach students a curriculum, endorsed by the state of course, and the students ability to learn said curriculum."

*

I agree with your idea that there are many different standards to measure a student by that do not involve testing. As you have said, class participation and general good behavior, which have no formal testing are important. However with the way schools are run today state assessments of standards are the best way to see which schools are doing well and which are not. If for instance one schools 8th graders are tested as performing significantly lower in math then most other schools then it can be argued that school has some kind of problem. With state standardized testing going on throughout the nation we can see which schools do better and which do worst. Identifying a problem is the first step in figuring out what to do about it. At the national level that's critical.

This idea is the same on the macro level as it is on the micro. If a student is not performing at what his grade level expects of him that means there is some area the student has fallen behind in and has to be addressed.

The first thing I would say to your first point is that both the SAT and the ACT were not created by the state but by non-profit organizations.

https://en.wikipedia.org...
https://en.wikipedia.org...(test)

The U.S. Department of Education actually uses the NAEP. Now States within the nation use their own specific testing to evaluate the needs of their schools but the NAEP is whats used to determine The Nation"s Report Card which is a non-partisan way of seeing the education level of Americas young people.

What is the NAEP?
https://nces.ed.gov...

Nations report card
https://www.nationsreportcard.gov...

To your second point I would say that the state has a responsibility to ensure the students under its care are ready for college. Standardized testing provides a road map with many stops along the way to ensure a student does not fall behind to much. Weather public schools take advantage of the map is another matter entirely.
Debate Round No. 2
Wyattcodered

Con

I do agree with you that SAT and ACT or private and give colleges a easy and fast way to compare colleges. I want to focus now on the mandatory part of the question first I will awnser to your statement that it ensures students under their care are ready for collage.

ensure means make certain that (something) shall occur or be the case.

Since 2002 under the no child left behind act the US slipped back to 31st in world education for math in 2009.While in 2001 a very simeral drop accord in reading. Let alone the fact that the test have bean prove to be inaccurate according to a 2001 study 50-81% of the test scores were temporary. Which means the test 1) didn't have anything of value or 2) the teachers would tech it where it would stick but not for the long term. This could be for serval reasons, one could very well be the new attain span of kids. With new tech and more directions in the 7th grade mind (girls or boys) it can lead for preambles in its self.

according to PHD Gerald Bracly standardized testing does not prepare students for the upcoming job world. "creativity, critical thinking, resilience, motivation, persistence, curiosity, endurance, reliability, enthusiasm, empathy, self-awareness, self-discipline, leadership, civic-mindedness, courage, compassion, resourcefulness, sense of beauty, sense of wonder, honesty, integrity." [147] These are the things Gerald has said would make a bigger impact in the job world then testing.

according to the Sacramento Bee "test-related jitters, among young 9th grade exam students have increased. As more stress gets put into the testing lower grades 7-9th get themselves dug into a whole. Its a battle of what's best for their future. A 7th grade student should not have to take the sundered test. If the student wants to take it as practice the school should provide it for him/her. BUT it should not be Mandorty for the student to take it.

few numbers to prove it

a teens average stress rate was 5.8 while adults were 5.1 leading cause Standardized testing
31% of teens said their stress level increased for last year

Stress is part of a students live but it should not be at 7th and 8th grade. Standardized test should be optional for 7th and 8th grade. If they want the practice great if they don't then they learn new math. science or whatever the school would offer instead. That does not mean more summer time for the 7th or 8th grader who doesn't take the standardized test.
Sardukar

Pro

Ill be rebutting most of your arguments in the final round as this one is the last one I can establish my own new arguments. Steel yourself!

1. Standardized tests are a tool, nothing more.

Each state has its own challenges when it comes to education. Some are strong in Math others in English and so on. Some are bad all around. When a state issues a standardized test it is to measure the level a school is at. Once a school is measured, depending on what level the school is at, a policy can be created to better serve that school.

For instance suppose a school is given a standardized test and most of its students pass or are deemed at least "proficient". The state now knows no new policy is needed for that school and can keep things running smoothly and not need to change much.

The school a few districts away is another story. Most of its students fail. The board of education now knows it needs to step up and figure out a solution. One way is to look at high scoring schools and see what they do that is different from low scoring schools. Maybe it is a matter of dress code or perhaps a learning technique used by high scoring schools. Whatever the case is due to the standardized test we can measure and learn from schools around the nation. With that knowledge we can continue to improve the learning experience for students across the country. I think that's a damn good idea and a worthwhile path to a plan of action.

Now I realize there are cases where low test scores have little to do with what education policy is in place within any given school. It may turn out that kids from a certain district are just poor and have to work in a chaotic environment. Yet without the standardized test it would be impossible to measure performance and so those kids would never have proof of performing poorly.

Education policy is not the only thing affected by these scores but entire political movements find them useful. With these tests on hand there is proof that a problem can exist.

http://www.diversityjournal.com...

Well a problem does exist.

2. Standardized tests are not designed to work alone.

https://www.ed.gov...
First off a quote from the U.S. Department of Education itself.

"One essential part of educating students successfully is assessing their progress in learning to high standards. Done well and thoughtfully, assessments are tools for learning and promoting equity. They provide necessary information for educators, families, the public, and students themselves to measure progress and improve outcomes for all learners. Done poorly, in excess, or without clear purpose, they take valuable time away from teaching and learning, draining creative approaches from our classrooms. In the vital effort to ensure that all students in America are achieving at high levels, it is essential to ensure that tests are fair, are of high quality, take up the minimum necessary time, and reflect the expectation that students will be prepared for success in college and careers."

The educators have to either understand instinctively or be trained to know what standardized testing is really about. It is not about competition in the classic sense but about seeing what a school or student needs and getting them the help that is required for academic success.

The standardized test is only one part of an education process which includes research, regular testing, listening, making reports, giving presentations and being a capable student in all aspects of life. The standardized test is best thought of as a scale. Sure it can be stressful to see how much you weigh when you want to lose weight. It's still the first step to achieving your goal. It's impossible to know what direction to go if you don't know where you are at.

When you do have a point of reference the directions you can go in are almost limitless because you can shoot from one thing to the next. When you do know where you are you know where to start, when you can start, there's no telling how far you can get.

That's what I want for American schools and why I think Standardized testing is the way to go.

*

Final round.

Let's see what you're made of :P
Debate Round No. 3
Wyattcodered

Con

in this debate you have brought up the topic that these standardized test are a way to judge schools on their testing abitlly. I agree with you in the fact that some schools tech other subjects better then others. A good math or science teacher could make a student in that subject better. Kind like a chief compared to a doctor in cooking. chances are the chief will cook better then Doctor. BUT this should be judged at a High school level not a Jr High level. Like a said before what is a 7th or 8th grader learning from a standardized test. At Jr high schools should be more focused on teaching the students higher math and science then teaching them for a standardized test. Instead jar High should find anther way besides testing to judge the good to bad schools in the local area.

Now to make second point I brought up that attain spans and poor test scores have gotten worse. You seem to agree with me on that point. I do think that higher up schools should be looked at to improve lower end schools. This should not be done through standardized testing. Instead the Education system should be judged on performance and knowledge of their students. Preparing your whole high school career for a one and done test does not help your kwoalege of your degree and future job. Instead should find a path in education to focus on what you might want to do with a future job. Schools should offer interview, resume, phil posy, and money management. Things what will be used in the future of their life's. Instead schools are determined to get the best test score out of their students making for their students to lose interest.

Summery,

A 7th and 8th grader should not have to be put through the mandatory testing. BUT schools should offer this as a option for the kids who want to practice their testing skills. Schools should not be judged on what score scored best overall on their standardized testing. Their are plenty more ways of getting into college then focusing on just scoring high on staderized testing. Higher up standardized testing like SAT and ACT should be maintained and kept by private broad and for colleges to judge at a regular basis.
Sardukar

Pro

What I should have probably clarified before is that my main point is standardized tests provide a functional road map on school needs and allow policy makers to act in a way beneficial to those needs.

Both jr. high and regular high school deserve a a fair and balanced assessment to provide a workable layout of what's going on. All levels of grades are important and the state has a right to know how effective both students and faculty are in academia. Especially when its taxpayer money at work. Nothing wrong with a little transparency where public money is involved.

Also I believe blaming the test for poor scores on said test is unsound. We should rejoice in having a test at all lol. With that test in hand, like i said before, policies can be set and things made right.

Standardized tests are the best way for a state to judge schools because the questions are all the same, the time frame is the same, it is carried out the same way each time, etc. If there is a more fair way to judge a school over the standardized test I have not witnessed it.

I would also say that it is not a standardized test's job alone to prepare students to enter the fast paced economic world of today. It is the teachers job to do so. Thing is, sometimes a teacher needs help. Standardized tests are a step in getting the help they need because those tests provide jumping off points in areas a student or school can be weak in.

Thank you for a great debate! lol
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Sardukar 7 months ago
Sardukar
Didn't know they let retards vote on these debates >.>
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by EXOPrimal 7 months ago
EXOPrimal
WyattcoderedSardukarTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Grammar, Conduct, and sources are all equal in this debate. I am giving my vote to con for these reason: Con posed an actual argument for why standardized TESTS are bad for students. Meanwhile pro only explained why standards are important(The only argument I could read is that tests are all the same, making them good, which con refuted and pro failed to defend), and never really ties his argument to tests in a logical way that I found compelling. A argument of con's that struck me was the argument that there are other standards to build off of. Pro really didn't address this in his argument, simply spiraling of to a point on how a standardized test can help point out abnormalities. I find that point of Pro's was very compelling but it was only mentioned in one round and is hardly enough to be considered a contention. Con was also the only debtor to use hard core statistics to back up his/her argument. Pro did not contend this with his own statistics making then go conceded. Pro wins.