Test Anxiety

                 
 

Fill the Pink Dot, mixed media, 11" x 11"

B, mixed media, 11" x 11"

Tic - Tic I, mixed media, 11" x 11"

Tic - Tic II, mixed media, 11" x 11"

Anxiety, mixed media, 11" x 11"

#2, mixed media, 11" x 11"

Model Student, mixed media, 11" x 11"

Bull's Eye, mixed media, 11" x 11"

ABCD, mixed media, 11" x 11"

 

We are a culture that places exorbitant value on quantifiable evidence as proof of growth in educational settings. These results place students on vocational or academic trajectories and frame opinions with which children and adults shape self-worth. The test results tell us a lot about the high-scoring students - the system and economy are working for their learning styles and socio-economic positions. What they don’t tell us is how the students who don’t score well excel. Carpenters, artists, chefs, plumbers - we know that some of these individuals who managed to navigate through the system and rise in their fields didn’t score well in school. I’m curious about these students who are tracked in overfilled vocational education or remedial classes. What don’t we know about them? What valuable contributions do they make to our democracy?

I advocate for alternative means of measurement and assessment for these students such as portfolios, written qualitative reflections, and presentations. Supporting alternative (and more expensive means) of measurement I advocate for smaller class sizes, innovative teacher hiring and development practices, and adequate funding for public schools.