Welcome back to another installment of Pearson Is Everywhere!
Last time, we looked at Pearson getting dumped by LAUSD in California.
Today, we get a look at the over 175,000 students who opted out of the Common Core PARCC test, which is created and written by Pearson.
Not only did droves of students opt out, there are reports of horrifyingly bad test questions.
Small wonder. Remember, pretty much anyone can write a test question for Pearson.
Washington Post‘s Valerie Strauss reported:
I wrote a post yesterday saying education activists were reporting more than 175,000 New York students had opted out of Common Core English Language Arts exams given last week — and many more districts were still unheard from. New York is at the center of a growing movement among parents around the country to protest new standardized tests aligned to the Common Core (or similar state standards) that they think are unfair to students and teachers because the results are used for high-stakes decisions against the advice of assessment experts. The post also mentioned some complaints from teachers about the composition of the tests, which are aligned to the Core and were created for the state of New York by Pearson, the largest education company in the world.
So, what is on the test?
Disgusted teachers and parents are defying the “gag order” and talking about the tests, anonymously, on blogs. The sixth-grade test has consistently come under fire, especially during Day 3 when an article entitled, “Nimbus Clouds: Mysterious, Ephemeral, and Now Indoors” from the Smithsonian Magazine appeared on one version of the test.
Here is a passage from the article:
As a result, the location of the cloud is an important aspect, as it is the setting for his creation and part of the artwork. In his favorite piece, Nimbus D’Aspremont, the architecture of the D’Aspremont-Lynden Castle in Rekem, Belgium, plays a significant role in the feel of the picture. “The contrast between the original castle and its former use as a military hospital and mental institution is still visible,” he writes. “You could say the spaces function as a plinth for the work.”
You can read the entire article here.
The genius at Pearson who put that article on the sixth-grade test should take his nimbi and his plinth and go contemplate his belly button in whatever corner of that Belgian castle he chooses. The members of the State Education Department who approved the article’s inclusion should go with him.
Tar. Feathers. Apply liberally.
There were more examples. Read the whole thing.