Text 16 Nov 5 notes The Cost of Standardized Tests in Music

Let’s talk about assessment in band.  We don’t have a standardized test, so instead we go to a yearly district-wide assessment.  Each group plays three songs for three judges and then sight-reads for a fourth judge.  Their scores are totaled, averaged, and a rating is given.  It is not a competition.  Groups are not ranked based on scores.

Here’s the catch: each student that participates is supposed to pay a per-student fee (which is not cheap).  This fee covers the judges’ payment and purchase of all new sight-reading music each year.  Some schools pay for their groups out of the school fund.  My groups are paid for from the band budget given by the county each year.  A few schools have to request that their students pay for it out of their own pocket.

I think it is crazy that students, schools, or band programs have to pay for an assessment. 

As one of my colleagues put it: “They don’t make the kids put in quarters to take the SOL.”

I understand what we are paying for.  I really do.  But I still don’t like it.  I wish there was a way that we could have assessment, but not make it a financial burden on the schools or students.

  1. teachers20 reblogged this from mscakemixer
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  3. music-teacher-in-training said: That is crazy! Ignoring the insult of them having to pay for it, I believe that students need to gain something from performances like this… making it solely about assessment takes away all of the value from an experience like this!
  4. mscakemixer posted this

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