With more and more schools turning to harder and harder standardized tests, it is causing students and teachers alike to become more stressed. They are becoming more stressed because now your teacher's job relies on whether or not you get a good grade on your test. Because of these tests, teachers are restricted on what they can teach, because they are on a very tight teaching schedule. The tests themselves aren't necessarily about what you learned about throughout the entire year, but more about what facts you can cram into your brain and regurgitate back out onto paper (or a computer) later. As a student, I feel like I don't learn as well as I could because of these tests. I'm basically learning just enough to take the test, just to forget about it all by the beginning of the next school year because it isn't taught in such a way that it stays. Because of these tests, hands on activities that actually teach kids and help them to remember the stuff till the next year or forever are thrown out the window.
Maybe instead of focusing on homework and all these grade to put in the grade book and cramming for tests and all these things schools look for and expect from an everyday student we should focus on knowing how to do the material, thinking for yourself, instead of memorization and forgetting it a couple months later how will that help you in life. All though I do agree with you on how its a little overkill but it does help you think for yourself unless you're an idiot and decide to cram and barely understand the material.