Is our Education System Test-Obsessed?


Photo Credit Ashley Bucknum

Engaging in a hands-on lab project, students learn how to distinguish different types of blood. Anatomy is a class that involves students in activities that enhance their comprehension and retention of material rather than just repetitive note-taking and testing.

Ashley Bucknum, Reporter

You’re sitting nervously at your desk. The teacher hands you a paper—it’s the test you’ve been worried about all week. Despite your constant hard work, this test could make or break your grade in the class. Do high schools focus too much on testing?

Currently, the curriculums that schools use may not be what students need. While testing is efficient in evaluating a student’s comprehension, it often fails in helping students retain that information once the test is over. junior Kaytlyn Seydler said.

Additionally, students spend an extreme amount of time preparing for and taking tests. According to the Baltimore Sun, students in Anne Arundel County “tested for up to 46 hours a year” in 2018. What was once a useful strategy in checking students’ progress has become an excessive tool that potentially causes unnecessary stress.

Moreover, some feel that students are tested on superfluous information. Kids learn about geometric proofs and iambic pentameter, but where are the sustainable living and personal finance classes? “I think we should be teaching more material that kids can take with them in the real world,” Anatomy teacher Nancy Schweigert said.

In the month of April, LHHS switches to a block schedule to accommodate AZMerit Testing. During this time, CTE students must also take their End of Course Assessment test and if they are part of a CTSO (like SkillsUSA), they will test for their competition. Furthermore, many will take a certification test (like ProTools), and juniors take the ACT. So an eleventh grade student may take up to four major tests in just 3 weeks, and this doesn’t even include their academic classes.

By the time May rolls around, students are nearly tested out, but finals loom just around the corner.