Nowadays we can’t open an educational magazine, journal or publication without coming across some mention of the term high-stakes testing. A quick Google search of the term high-stakes testing turns up approximately 5,540,000 results. The Cambridge Online Dictionary provides the following definition:
high-stakes– used to describe a situation that has a lot of risk and in which someone is likely to either get or lose an advantage, a lot of money, etc.
And yet rarely, if ever, do we refer to the development of our children as high-stakes. Why is this? It is not because we don’t take their education seriously. We do. And, it is not because we aren’t taking their development seriously. We are.
I contend that we have become so obsessed with testing and accountability that we have lost track of what is most important. Children today spend exponentially more time being assessed than ever before. It seems as if we are more concerned with knowing if a child knows how to add fractions than knowing if a child is happy and well-adjusted....