I have been following the Seattle teacher’s boycott of a district standardized test called the MAP but was a little confused about what exactly they are trying to accomplish. Articles with headlines like “Seattle’s Boycotting Teachers Start Crusade Against Standardized Testing” make me think it is time to buckle up and prepare for the revolution. As I dug deeper I found this really helpful article in Ed Week that clarified a couple of facts: 1) the teachers are not boycotting a state exam but a district exam and 2) their main concern is the exam, called the MAP, is not aligned to the state standards they are required to teach. The teachers were warned that if they do not administer the MAP they will be placed on a 10 day leave without pay; a threat which changed none of their minds. Want to hear from someone on the other side? The CEO of the company that produces the MAP exam wrote an OP-ED laying out his argument for the validity of the exam.
I am not sure wether or not this boycott qualifies as a “crusade” however these teachers are certainly attracting attention and gaining support. The NEA, AFT, and Chicago Teachers Union recently released a statement of support for the Seattle teachers. Want to jump on the bandwagon? The Seattle Teachers’ Association calls for those sympathetic to the Seattle teachers to show our support by wearing red to school tomorrow.
Are you wearing red tomorrow? I think I just might . . .