With Teachers This Smart, Who Needs Standardized Tests?

Sioux Falls elementary teacher Jennifer Egstad puts the Common Core tests in proper perspective for her third-grade Spanish immersion students:

Jennifer Egstad, letter to parents, posted to Facebook by parent Alexandra Szameit, 2016.04.19
Jennifer Egstad, letter to parents, posted to Facebook by parent Alexandra Szameit, 2016.04.19.

The “Smarter Balanced” standardized tests tell us something, but they don’t tell us everything. Egstad’s clear understanding of her students strengths, needs, and achievements should make us wonder whether the standardized tests tell us anything that our children’s professional, caring teachers don’t already know.


6 Responses to With Teachers This Smart, Who Needs Standardized Tests?

  1. Mrs. Egstad can teach my grandkids any day. Best thing I’ve read in a long while, and I read a lot. I hope she gets a huuuugge raise.

  2. Maybe if we had more Mrs. Egstads in the world, we wouldn’t have to worry as much about standardized testing. Unfortunately, we don’t. At least with standardized testing, it helps to motivate the under performing teachers that are so common in many school districts through a negative feedback loop.
    I praise this letter and hope my children can benefit from multilingual elementary education, but we must realize the reality, educational standards are important if we want to keep our kids smart. I hope Mrs. Egstad can continue to find that balance.

  3. Donald Pay

    Perfect.

  4. I would not expect any other answer from Jenni! Good Person!

  5. MD, I slantwise disagree. We do need educational standards, but I contend that teachers like Ms. Egstad bring all the standards we need. If there are bad teachers who don’t carry around good standards in their heads and hearts (and Ms. Egstad’s letter reminds us that teaching demands both receptacles be filled with good material), the rest of us should be able to recognize that right away and demand that those teachers improve or depart. We do not need the external, bureaucratic standards of Common Core or any other standards movement to achieve the good education Ms. Egstad is giving her kids.

  6. Dan Goodwin

    Mrs. Egstad is the real deal! A true professional and even more importantly, a kind, compassionate human being who understands the necessity for balance in every kids educational journey.