Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Gateway test week or weak?

Gateway tests are the focus of many high school seniors and their parents this week. If a student fails any of the three Gateway tests in mathmatics, science and language arts they will not receive a diploma.

Opinions in the press range from the optimistic in Knoxville to the nearly dismal in Memphis.

When the results come back the blame game will begin. Fingers will be pointed at the students themselves, teachers, parents, curriculum, local superintendents and even the graders. Regardless, the fact will remain that despite 13 years in the system these students still don't have the background necessary for many of today's jobs, let alone skills for just living in our world. While we'll say 'they failed' in reality 'we failed' to provide the education they needed.

And then to turn this around a bit, why can't a student who manages to pass these tests much earlier, say 11th grade, get their diploma and move on to college or technical school?

For those of you who aren't sure what these are you may want to start with Claudette Riley's article in the Tennessean and then move on to the State of Tennessee Education page.

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