January 31, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to inform me about the situation regarding Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), I appreciate you becoming engaged with the political process.
As the child of a teacher, I understand the challenges our educators and students face in our public schools. I agree that we must actively seek out better ways to assess our students and teachers.
Every child in our public schools deserves a quality education. The best way to accomplish this is through instruction time, not standardized testing. Although I see the value in standardized testing, a test that takes up so much time out of the classroom does not further us in our mission to provide a quality education for every child in the State of Washington, unless its accuracy and diagnostic value are significant. I am not yet convinced that this is the case with MAP. I am keeping an open mind, but I have to see more in support of this test.
As you may already know, Seattle Public Schools started MAP as a pilot program for the 2008-2009 academic year. The following academic year, a contract was signed with the Northwest Evaluation Association to continue to administer the test in Seattle Public Schools. The contract has been renewed annually ever since. The contract will be up for review in the spring.
A few weeks ago, Seattle Public School Superintendent José Banda sent a letter to principals, teachers, and staff regarding the MAP test. In the letter, he indicated that the District has agreed to place MAP under review and he invites all principals and teachers to be a part of a formal process, beginning in February, to evaluate the MAP test and make recommendations for assessing student learning in Seattle Public Schools.
You are also probably aware of the disciplinary action that Superintendent Banda has threatened to take if teachers continued to refuse to administer the MAP test. I encourage you to send a letter to the Seattle School Board and Superintendent Banda to make them further aware of your concerns.
I fully support the efforts of our public school educators to raise awareness on this important issue. Thank you for your activism!
Senator Adam Kline37th Legislative District
223 John A. Cherberg Building
PO Box 40437
Olympia, WA 98504-0437
Telephone: (360) 786-7688
FAX: (360) 786-1999
Legislative Hotline: (800) 526-6000
TTY: (800) 635-9993