Most Educators Believe We Overtest While Only 23% of Students Agree, Says Gallup Survey

ASSESSMENT FOR EVERYONE? It’s fair to say there’s no one-size-fits-all option when it comes to how individual students test. But according to a study by the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) and Gallup, there’s a bigger question at hand: are we testing kids too much? The study, entitled “Make Assessment Work for All Students: Multiple Measures Matter,” reports that more than 7 in 10 educators (teachers, admins, and superintendents) believe we overtest—while ironically, only 23% of students report that they test “too much.”

Additionally, there’s space to better support parents. As of this survey, 6 in 10 parents say their child’s teachers “rarely or never discuss their child’s assessment results with them,” even though the majority of parents most parents consider multiple assessment types “helpful” or “very helpful” to their child’s learning.

There is space for improvement, as more than half of respondents are hopeful about the impact of ESSA on creating new forms of and limits on assessment. As far as the kinds of assessments teachers trust the most, there’s a pretty even divide amongst formative assessments (33%), classroom tests or quizzes (32%) and student portfolios (29%), as seen above. But the document attempts to reconcile these differences with a “recommendations” section, which includes several suggestions about how to achieve consensus about the assessments that individual schools or districts deliver.

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