Opinion: School prepares us for testing, not learning

Simar Kapoor, Staff Writer

Schools nationwide stress testing and high grades for funding. For example, an A level school would receive more grants from  the state than a C average school. Charter has been an A school for 17 years, this will be the first time it digresses  

Too often students are treated as if their potential is a score, it takes away from what learning is. Learning should be about making mistakes and exploring new compelling ideas. Each student should have the freedom to explore intellectual topics without the performance pressure. 

Our motto “committed to being a premier educational committee” implores creativity and integrity. 

Many times  I see schools invest in resources, without the student’s take. We could ask students how they feel regarding school policies or various classes. A solution would be providing an anonymous survey each semester or quarter on what could be improved. 

Regarding our new grading policy, tests are worth more than practice. This was essentially executed in the students’ interest. Allowing each student to check their understanding after each lesson or module.

The policy missed the curve, now we adhere to perfection.

For example, suppose a student receives a 70 percent on a test. What is the 30 percent they missed? That 30 percent could be what makes or breaks the deal.

One solution to this problem would be creating study groups based on specific needs. Every student would have a plan fit to their needs. Although this would require more time and practice, it  would steadily increase scores. For instance, after school a certain group could meet and practice on a certain topic.

Respect and communication are the top two pillar to success. Each student should be regarded with integrity, not yelled at or pounced on. This goes for students, they should voice their concerns and create a communicative, respectable relationship.

Many students also feel anxious or uneasy taking a test that weights a lot on them. Administration puts pressure, and going into a major test feels fidgety, or apprehensive. As a student, I go into tests and once I finish I remember everything that I could have put or added. Some people describe this feeling as blanking out.

Teaching for testing has taken away from learning. Learning interactively is a tool students will use on the work field. Testing strips collaborative projects, art elements and creative concepts. Collaborative projects and groups elements are missing, and that teamwork perspective is important. Students can meet, collaborate, and discuss intellectual topics. When we train to test, we don’t necessarily look into the teamwork skills students benefit from.  

 Overall when we take away testing and measure on improvements, students are bound to be more creatively free and pioneering. Testing strips away authenticity and brands each student based on their ability.  

Get going!