Parent to NYC Official: Stop the Intimidation! by Diane Ravitch
Last year, Jeff Nichols and his wife Ann Stone wrote an article that appeared in the New York Times about taking the “practice” version of the third-grade English language arts test. The test was sent home with one of their children as “vacation homework,” an oxymoron in itself.
Both college professors, they did it for fun with two friends. All have Ph.D.s. they couldn’t agree on the right answers and concluded the test was ridiculous. They became activists in the opt-out movement.
Recently, Jeff wrote a high-ranking official at the New York City Department of Education to inform him that his children will not be taking the tests this spring. The official (who was once an anti-testing activist when he was a teacher long ago) replied that parents have the right to t out but their school may be punished if the participation rate falls below 95%. Is this not a profile in courage? By the way, there is no risk that anyone at the DOE will see this blog, because the computers are set to block all WordPress sites.
Jeff Nichols wrote this letter, which he sent to many others, including me:
“Dear Mr. Suransky,
“An email you recently sent to various CECs in the city affirms that families in New York City do have the right to substitute a portfolio assessment for the mandated state tests, yet seems to hold over those families the threat that such individual acts of conscience can cause adverse consequences for schools: