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Jeffco Student Voice Reflections

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by

Hilario Benzon

on 12 December 2014

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Transcript of Jeffco Student Voice Reflections


After examining the student comments in the Student Concerns section, the following were the major themes that arose from their reflections:

General Feelings and Comments,
Implication of Test Scores and Impact of Testing on Student,
Impact of Test Scores on School and Teachers,
Effects of Testing on Classes and Learning,
Communication and
Connection to ACT or College and Career Connectedness.

General Feelings and Comments
I feel uninformed and no one cares.
Feels pointless and pushed on us.
Really stressful.
CMAS destroyed me.
CMAS seems like a bigger burden than other tests.

Implication of Test Scores and Impact of Testing on Student
I feel misrepresented by my scores, test, etc.
It worries me that I don’t know how PARCC will affect me.
Too much pressure to do well on standardized tests freaks me out so I don’t do my best.
5 or 6 hours straight is unreasonable. Tiny little breaks just don’t cut it.
Unfair to judge how smart you are based on a test.
The tests don’t show our potential.
Scores don’t consider our lives outside of school.
At my school, no one is taking it seriously. We know that none of this is impacting our future.
No incentive to do well on anything that doesn’t affect us.

Implication of Test Scores and Impact of Testing on Student
CMAS was rushed, no one knew about it. If you miss it, you can’t take it after the final due date kids miss ways to make it up) goes on your transcript—stressful.
I don’t know why I’m taking the test or how the results affect me (and teachers and school) AND ignorance leads to apathy.
Some of the students in the group actually like computerized testing because it’s easier to type than write.
Another student likes the written because you can skip around the sessions as necessary.
Not the best way to assess our knowledge. There’s a better way to know what we learned instead of memorizing a bunch of things. Not best way to show our skills.

Impact of Test Scores on School and Teachers
We are at a small school so when a lot of students fail (i.e. aren’t motivated to do well) it looks worse.
Judges schools—a few people failing makes huge difference for small schools.
The impact on teachers is unfair.
Schools are set up differently but have to take the same test. Make the test optional for students who really don’t care about taking them. Testing takes a lot of time out of the classroom.
The behaviors of staff and schools is so different during test window—get enough sleep, eat right, the rest of the year it doesn't matter, they just load you up.
Effects of Testing on Classes and Learning
Makes me less willing to come to school.
Tests take us out of class and limit learning.
Hard to learn new things while worrying about the test.
Finish TCAP and still have to go to other classes, worry about other homework.
Limits time in class.
Testing takes away an entire week of class time, it takes away from what’s important- doesn’t make sense?
Computerized testing takes away from school resources needed to complete assignments.
Block scheduling and testing don’t mix. Teacher instruction gets cut short because of testing.
Communication
I understand why at the administrative level but not the learning level.
No one has communicated all of this to us.
They made me take CMAS, I couldn’t opt out.
No one communicates changes in testing, or why we do it.

Jeffco Student Voice Reflections
November 12, 2014

What is your view of the mandatory state testing you have participated in? (CSAP, TCAP, ACT, CMAS)
Assessments
Connection to ACT or College and Career Connectedness
I care about the ACT because it determines where I’ll go to college; I don’t care about the others.
In Kyrgyzstan, they test at the end of each year and a college entrance exam only.
To get into college- they look at my test scores, essays, transcripts, etc.; in the school district- they look at my test scores. ????
ACT should take priority for anyone planning on going to college.
Nowhere near the amount of time the ACT would take.
ACT holds more weight.
Student Recommendations:
Additionally when reviewing the student recommendations, the comments were easily categorized into the following areas:

Test Composition and
Testing Structure/ Scheduling.

Test Composition
Tests should be shorter with better questions.
Include other testing areas.
Need to take into consideration all the things that make our world and what impacts our world.
Look at overall unit test/ class grades—instead of generalizing tests to every student at every school (standardized)—taking great consideration of unit tests.
More time for timed tests- more opportunities to plan.
We don’t get enough time to write a paper about a topic that you just found out about; it doesn’t represent the time of writer I am.
Apply to content in the same year, taking algebra test for state while taking geometry.
We need more released items so we can at least know what to expect on the new test.

Test Composition
The tests need to be level appropriate (they need to match the classes students have taken).
There need to be other assessments that measure knowledge in different ways (ex. projects, diagrams, presentations, portfolios)
We need to give students better reports of how they scored so that it is useful to them.
Individualize standardized testing--if they want to know how well students are doing then look at GPA, class schedule, credits, attendance, etc.
Timing and relevance—senior CMAS is disconnected.
What if individuals could pick the tests based on their interests or show their skills? Can we personalize the testing?
Student shouldn’t have to represent the school—the school should be ranked on what they offer, not how the students do.
Timing and relevance—senior CMAS is disconnected.
What if individuals could pick the tests based on their interests or show their skills? Can we personalize the testing?
Student shouldn’t have to represent the school—the school should be ranked on what they offer, not how the students do.
Test Composition
Testing Structure/ Scheduling
Schools are set up differently but have to take the same test. Make the test optional for students who really don’t care about taking them. Testing takes a lot of time out of the classroom.
Spread it out? NO. Have it at all at once
What if there was a representative who designed the test came and did group assessment at all schools?
Student Questions
Students determine how well the school does based on their scores—so why aren’t we informed more?
What does the test mean for us, our school and our teachers?
How do you get seniors to be excited or invested in scoring well?
How are you supposed to care about a test that has no application to your direct life? At least, TCAP and CSAP give you a visual representation of where you are in your learning process.
How do you try to hold teachers accountable to testing when students learn differently?
What does testing do for us? What if you don’t go to college? Or, in college you don’t need all the other stuff so why get tested on it?
What if there was a representative who designed the test came and did group assessment at all schools?
What if individuals could pick the tests based on their interests or show their skills? Can we personalize the testing?
Can’t we base it on grades? Why isn’t that good enough?
Student Questions
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