Special Education Teacher: The Absurdity of Testing My Students

Diane Ravitch's blog

This teacher teaches children with severe disabilities. She is a BAT. She is conscientious and devoted to her work. She was rated “developing,” which is one step above “ineffective.”

She writes:

“In my career (and this is every year), I am potty training, teaching self hygiene, teaching self regulation, executive functioning, how to SPEAK, for God’s sake.

“I teach children how to hold a pencil, write their name, the fundamentals that they need and more. On top of that, I teach a ridiculous curriculum, mandated by NYS, to a self-contained class of what has been Kindergarten through 3rd graders, sometimes all in one class. I have taught class sizes from 12 to 17, when there were only supposed to be 12. This past year, my class was a mix of children with autism, children who are emotionally disturbed and unmedicated, children with speech and language impairments, and children who…

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