Have you noticed how the new buzzword in education is "assessments"?
We never give tests anymore - just assessments.
Never mind that the assessments look, smell, and feel just like tests.
They are NOT tests.
Do you want to know why we cannot call these things tests anymore?
Because ever since NCLB, education reformers and testmeisters have discovered that people HATE tests and worry that there are too many high-stakes tests for their children at school.
They worry that because the stakes for these tests are so high for schools, administrators, and teachers that their children will be short-changed a real education and given test prep ad nauseum.
They are right to worry about this, of course, and the ed deformers know this, so they decided to go Orwellian on us and change the name from tests to assessments.
Assessments is such a more friendly word.
There is no hard "t" sound.
Instead there is that very soft, very friendly "s" sound.
So much friendlier than the "t" for test.
But make no mistake, a test by any other name (like assessment) is still a test and the Obama administration has ushered in an era of high stakes testing that is a Jeb Bush wet dream.
Here in NY State, teachers are going to see "a staggering amount of new assessments."
But the Regents said we have to be careful to not "overtest."
And Obama also said last week that overtesting makes education boring so we have to be careful not to do this.
Lucky for us we don't use the word test anymore, eh?
These are just assessments!
It's a different thing, you know?
Except, of course, it's not.