Keep Calm And Refuse The Test


A video posted on May 26, 2013, caught my eye during the 2014 testing debate.

As parents in New York have stood up against standardized education such as Common Core teaching, veteran Ellie Rubenstein decided to resign instead of face a transfer that she says was prompted in retaliation for having spoken out against poor climate in school and flawed educational policy.

Among her concerns that have gone viral:

“I have experienced the depressing, gradual downfall and misdirection of education that has slowly eaten away at my love of teaching.”

“The emphasis in eduction has shifted from fostering academic and personal growth in both students and teachers, to demanding uniformity and conformity.”

“Raising students’ test scores on standardized tests is now the only goal, and in order to achieve it the creativity, flexibility and spontaneity … have been eliminated.”

“Everything I loved about teaching is extinct.”

“Curriculum is mandated. … The classroom teacher is no longer trusted or in control of what, when, or how she teaches.”

She says complaint forms and write-ups are being used as tools to target teachers and keep them as “yes men,” instead of being used to get rid of poor educators — and she even takes a shot at the union. “I thought I would be a teacher for the rest of my life,” Rubenstein says as her voice begins to crack.

“I have to get out before my sense of self and self-worth is completely obliterated,” she adds later.

This teacher deliberately resigned. She felt forced to do so. That speaks volumes.

The 2014 ELA exams have been rife error with complaints and concerns that the tests amount to abuse. Testing Talk, feedback from Educators regarding the ELA CC tests, provides a provocative account of the issues that are of conce.

But, what options do our students have under the same poor conditions and this “inhumane” climate that the teacher refers to?

Quit school? Fail the ridiculous tests?


Failure is not an option.

Diane Ravitch, a New York University professor and former U.S. assistant secretary of education, said  “It’s time for civil disobedience,” regarding high stakes testing and flawed education policy. “If they tell you to do something you know is wrong, don’t do it.”

What happens when parents say “No, not with my child”?  

They protect their child against state-sanctioned harm.

The only option for students to challenge the same “inhuman” treatment  is to refuse the test!

So far this year alone,  over 33, 000  students refused the test in New York.

Math exams commence April 30, 2014 – it is expected that record numbers of students will be refusing the test!



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