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(Florida Today)   Teacher busted for helping students cheat on state comprehensive exam; blames it on pressure imposed by state for kids to do well on test. Actual teaching of material apparently not considered helpful in this endeavor   ( divider line
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125 clicks; posted to Main » on 25 Mar 2003 at 4:53 PM (14 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2003-03-25 11:55:33 AM  
Lol we had a substitute gym techer let us cheat on a test when I was in high school. I can't say I blamed him though why they hell we had to take tests in gym I'll never understand.

The funny part was he got caught and was never seen again.
2003-03-25 12:34:29 PM  
From what I recall from high school some years ago, it'd become so pathetic that teachers would spend several days teaching "test-taking strategies" to the students--time that could've been well-spent teaching the material.

The apparent goal of such teaching manuevers was to help students answer correctly if they couldn't figure out the actual answer. But what good is that in assessing a student's knowledge of something?

This is what happens when we get management professionals and politicians running our school systems.
2003-03-25 12:56:00 PM  
"Three in a row ... no, no, no!"
2003-03-25 04:58:33 PM  
Longest. Headline. Ever.
2003-03-25 04:58:56 PM  
What movie was this? Anybody??
2003-03-25 04:59:55 PM  
"The FCAT has become the Swiss Army Knife of tests. We use it for student promotion, graduation, bonuses to individual schools and staff, and post the results publicly for public praise or condemnation," he said.

so in other words, people get to laugh at you sorry ass until you bring a gun to school and show them who retarted.


2003-03-25 05:00:08 PM  
I don't know if anyone said this already because reading is so boring and lame that I can't be bothered to read even a handful of comments, but that headline kicked ass.
2003-03-25 05:01:01 PM  
"Hmmm hmmm hhmm hmmmnumberthreeyouidiotmmmmm hmmm hmmm hmmm ..."
2003-03-25 05:01:53 PM  
Yeah, nevermind that the kids these days have no respect for anyone, and our whiney ass, blame everyone else society doesnt give them any tools to enforce any type of discipline, let alone give them any way of dealing with asshat disruptive punk kids, lets also hold their feet to the fire with tax dollars only being given out for schools that have a certain percentage of students passing exams.

You people disgust me. You refuse to discipline your own kids, and let them disrespect others, then blame other people for your kids behavior. To put the icing on the cake you then wont pass any type of legislation that actually helps schools or increases pay for teachers dealing with your little miscreants.

fark you all.
2003-03-25 05:03:44 PM  
Here in Texas, it was the TAAS. I swear, 90% of the school year was spent preparing for that test. They made such a huge deal out of it - then after you take it for the last time in 10th grade and they get their bonuses, it's never spoken of again.
2003-03-25 05:05:23 PM  
You can't really say anything here unless you've been in the academic situation. The teachers are utterly, completely getting the "importance of the test" rammed down their throats, which convienently transfers itself to the students. Last year, about five classes christmas-treed the entire test because they were tired of the stress. Is that smart or justified? It depends. The cause is just, but the manner probably was not. THe teachers hardly teach real curriculum anymore. They just hand out practice sheets, advise you on how to fill in the answer grids, and all of the rest of it. Year round. It's way too overblown, and ultimately, they will realize they are harming the students in the end by teaching barely anything of the core curriculum. There needs to be some serious thought as to how these things are done.

Want to know why the school places so much emphasis on the test, now? Oh please, you've probably already guessed it. Money. Funding. Grants. The almighty dollar, ladies and gentlemen.
2003-03-25 05:05:33 PM  
End of year exams are silly as hell. North Carolina has them and have gone so far as to attatch bonuses for teachers whose departments "do well" in scoring. Bonuses were in the $2,300 range so I don't blame them for wasting 2 weeks on a state mandated test. Just seems like farked up priorities on the school district's part. Now teachers cheating for the kids is whole different ballgame.
2003-03-25 05:05:47 PM  
This is actually great news in a skewed sense .. it helps the case of people who've been debating this subject in Florida for a while.

The FCAT test is under heavy controversy in Florida based on the same principles that led to this: Schools get funding based on FCAT test results (the better you do, the more you get... weird, huh?). Because of this, teachers get heavy pressure from schools to get their kids to pass the test. The result? Such a strong will (need) to get kids to pass the tests has resulted in teachers showing their students how to pass tests rather than actually teaching them anything.

The good news is, I recently heard that Florida has moved UP a notch to 47th ranked state education! BOO-YAH, grandma! Boo-yah....

2003-03-25 05:05:50 PM  
I agree with the placing of the blame. My mom's a teacher and every year they raise the standards, no matter what the makeup of the group is. There is no such thing as average anymore; everyone is expected to be above average to meet with world standards. The federal and state education people fail to realize that the reason that our scores are lower than those of other countries is because we test EVERYONE--not just those deemed competant. The pressures put on teachers these days are rediculous--in WV, teachers are expected to teach in every subject area, drug abuse, test taking strategies, and character education. They're also expected to check on parents for parental involvement. Last time i checked, most of the stuff they do should be the parents' responsibility. It's really frustrating for teachers, and the only solution is to trust teachers to do their job.
2003-03-25 05:06:04 PM  
This is every goddamn school in the country.
2003-03-25 05:06:18 PM  
Just WHO is the "you" you speak of JamesBong??
2003-03-25 05:08:44 PM  

LFAO ;-)
2003-03-25 05:09:01 PM  
Concise headlines surrender.
2003-03-25 05:09:19 PM  
Either excellent sarcasm or you need a tin hat. Either way I applaud you.
2003-03-25 05:10:53 PM  
I'm sorry - but the FCAT test is about as easy as they come. Most of the stress and pressure regarding it has been created by the schools. It's no different than the "Minimum Basic Skills" tests I had to take back in N.J. I've talked to lots of kids about here in FL because of all the hype in the media - and these kids aren't destined to be Magna Cum Laude at Stanford - and they agreed that if you can't pass it, you've got some serious problems. If the pressure is too great on the kids, I fear it is the teachers and administrations who are generating it.
2003-03-25 05:11:05 PM  
Maveno, well, he does make a valid point, although his articulation is a bit uncouth.

/99th percentile
2003-03-25 05:11:35 PM  
As a result, the FCAT math and science scores of 42 students were invalidated this month.

WTF? 42 students in this woman's class? Now I know why she has no time to teach. Or do 5th graders rotate among teachers these days?
2003-03-25 05:12:27 PM  
Wen i had a qestion durng an exam (didnt mater what kind)- I wood just brung my test up two teh teecher and they wood casuly point too teh wright answer. w00t! Homeschool!

/note- This is not a dig at homeschooling, i just felt like being silly. Please don't flame me or tell me to die. Schumz, I'm looking in your direction.
2003-03-25 05:14:16 PM  
Maybe if they put more value on teacher's abilities than the scores students get on irrelevant standardized tests that they care nothing about...
2003-03-25 05:15:29 PM  
And now 42 students' tests have been invalidated, when most would have passed without her interference. Bra-vo, Ms. Stinson, you are truly a model among educators!
2003-03-25 05:23:30 PM  
FarkinFarker, I think it's the HBO move Cheaters
2003-03-25 05:23:58 PM  
I did my time in the Florida school system, and I can remember all the time we spent preparing for the FCAT. As for the cheating issue brought up in the article, I can't say I'm surprised. I remember a story about one time a teacher got busted, because a student didn't know the meaning of a word used in a question. All the teacher did was tell the student what the word meant, and she got in huge trouble. Suspended or something, I don't remember since I was only in the 3rd or 4th grade. The school board is pretty strict on cheating, you could say.

/got nothin'
2003-03-25 05:24:00 PM  
in wisconsin, people are now allowed to send their kids to any school district - provided that they can transport them there - the school districts get state funding based on the number of students attending the school - therefore, schools that look nicer, that have more ap classes and that score higher on tests - so schools are being forced to cut funding to drafting, art, auto shop, programming type classes and being forced to teach to the tests

this also means less freedom for the teachers - and pisses them off and that gets transfered to the students -
there are less field trips, less activities (ie the government class (taught by one of the favorite teachers who has since quit for a different profession) used to hold a "legislative session" near the end of the year - students would write bills, choose parties, elect a speaker, create an adjenda - then go to the theater and hold an assembly discussing, rewriting and voting on the bills for 3 days - other teachers would let students watch the session instead of holding class sometimes during those days - this would no longer be even considered because it doesn't help you on a test

the main test that is used to compare schools is simply a test for comparing schools - the student is not individualy affected by the results of a test - yet - a week is spent preparing for and taking this test sophmore year - since the test doesn't affect you personally, students tend to not give a shiat - the principal actually threatened my brother's class this year that if they didn't do well, he'd have to cut some (of the few remaining) tech classes
2003-03-25 05:24:01 PM  
PopeDX: That would be great, but then you have to unwind the whole "tenure" scheme. Good luck getting the teachers' unions to agree to that.
2003-03-25 05:27:56 PM  
Of course, the easiest way to raise a school's standardized test scores is to simply expell the underperforming students.

You think I'm joking? Take a look at this!

2003-03-25 05:28:03 PM  
hey, if this is anything like virginia's SOL tests, I cant blame the guy. Thats a perfect example of good intentions paving the road to hell.
2003-03-25 05:34:13 PM  
These tests are so misguided. My mother used to be a 5th grade teacher (now she's principal), and had to give out similar tests. The 5th graders tests had questions about Egyptian history on them. The problem is in her system Egyptian history is covered in 6th grade. So all these 10 year olds are freaking out because they don't know a single answer on a huge section of the test. It winds up being a means for politicians to create a state-mandated curriculum.

Now that she's a principal, she's even more fed up. Every student has to take the same tests, including kids with severe disabilities. It really is cruel. Not to mention, schools with more disabled students have lower average scores, so they get penalized. Great logic.
2003-03-25 05:34:30 PM  
In Washington state they have special "tutors" that assist children with learning disabilities (such as dyslexia) though the WASL test. They sit with the child and will read the questions to the child and cue them through parts the child is not understanding.

School districts put pressure on teachers to "teach the WASL" ie, gear the curriculum to what kind of questions will appear on the test. Because districts are "rewarded" for good scores -- bad scores mean punitive action by the state.

The stupid thing is that these tests are just like SAT prep -- spending so much time "cramming" information makes it meaningless. Once it's been regurgitated onto the test page, it gone for good from your memory. How is that really teaching kids anything?
2003-03-25 05:34:41 PM  
How to create a lower class in three easy steps:

1. Control education funding.
2. Require standardized tests.
3. Base education funding on the results of said tests and the average tax base of a particular neighborhood.

Result: Smart kids (typically richer kids since they get that whole tax base thing) get more funding while dumb kids get less. Within 20 years - instant lowerclass.
Government benefit: Maintain class structure while appearing to be concerned with combating poverty. Saved money can be used to purchase 30 new jets to carpet bomb 3rd world nations.
2003-03-25 05:35:00 PM  
Why yes, blame it on the pressure, just as commission-needy salespeople get to make up bogus transactions and thus embezzle from their employers. Sheesh.
2003-03-25 05:35:01 PM  
The student's learning of material is not entirely up to the teacher--the student has to have some aptitude and make an effort to succeed. If there are alot of slackers the teacher cannot well fail them all. What to do?
2003-03-25 05:35:40 PM  
This is what you get when you let asshat republicans get their agenda to test schools. It is just a way for them to validate that little brown children can't read and that they should go to a school that teaches them to lean on Jesus when you are having trouble with 2+2.

The concept that schools are held "accountable" when they are given an operating budget that would make a McDonalds manager cry is another abomination, but understandable given our current political situation. The only way for the united states to survive is to provide the greatest education in the world and we are currently in the bottom 1/2 - just like the great state of Texas 49th of 50 states in childhood issues. Summers should be reduced, teacher salaries should double (in a free market economy who would be incentivised to teach other than the true bleeding hearts or already rich), and class sizes should be cut in half. Instead of anything logical budgets are being cut and every kid will soon be left behind by our illegitimate, elitist, and morally confused bornagain administration.

This shortsightedness crap needs to end, standardized testing is a freaking joke and we are currently in hell waiting for a handbasket..

2003-03-25 05:39:46 PM  
Fitzov -- In an ideal system, the students would indeed all fail if they deserved it. "Social promotion" doesn't exist outside of K-12, and it probably wouldn't hurt for the slackers to learn that.
2003-03-25 05:40:18 PM  
The problem is that the only way that schools get funding is through doing well on these inane tests. Does the government care that they are spending cash on a test that has only a loose correlation to what students need... Then take the results of said half-@ssed test and reward the schools that do well on it. Does the test evaluate the skills of the students or show them the farked up methods our schools must prove their worth? When I was in school I knew kids that would flunk standardized tests just so they wouldn't have to do any homework (the stupid kids have it easy).

This screw-up of a teacher did nothing but ruin any chance of actually teaching people; but in her demented mind it may have been the best way for her to get that pay raise she obviously deserved. This is all about being a product of a system.
2003-03-25 05:45:16 PM  
Maybe instead of all this complaining about what the test does and does not indicate, we could accept the startling reality that our children are not learning.
2003-03-25 05:48:02 PM  
There was a great episode of Frontline on testing. Since it was produced by WGBH in Boston, they focused on Massachusett's much maligned MCAS. There was a great segment about a student who figured out that one of the math questions was wrong. It was multiple choice and there was no correct answer provided. So he winds up wasting tons of time trying to figure out this one question. His teacher (who happens to be a family friend) was on Frontline saying, "Who would you rather have working for you or going to your college? Some kid who can regurgitate a bunch of memorized answers on a multiple choice test? or a kid like Tom who can think critically on his own?"
2003-03-25 05:48:47 PM  
If it is any indication, of all the people I met at my university, the least bright of the lot always seemed to be those getting degrees in education.

There are smart teachers out there, but most of them, in my experience, are not very bright.
2003-03-25 05:52:02 PM  
Farker busted for posting absolutely massive headline on fark front page; blames it on pressure imposed by raging out of control fark mob to do make wittier and wittier posts. Concise humour and wit apparently not considered helpful in this endeavor.
2003-03-25 05:52:09 PM  
The_temp -- There are more ways to write tests than multiple-choice, and far more interesting and useful things to test than regurgitation. It wouldn't surprise me, in fact, if many college students would wince more on hearing that an exam were open-book, open-notes, as that's a pretty good indication that rote memorization won't save them.
2003-03-25 05:53:38 PM  
mockery that makes sense also apparently not considered helpful in this endeavor

/self jab
2003-03-25 05:53:59 PM  
Florida's education system is heading for the toilet. School funding is based on what overall grade (A-F) a school gets, so cheating is probably more commonplace. Standardized testing is ridiculous to start with, so why don't we base funding upon it (the smart schools get richer and attract better teachers and the dumb schools get poorer and cant attract teachers because no one wants a low paying job teaching morons.) Another thing is the class size amendment that was passed in Florida. That thing is leaching money from the state run universities (and really pisses me off). Only Dade, Broward, and West Palm Beach counties actually voted for this and by a 9 to 1 margin. As for the other 60 counties the vote was close and the damn thing passed. (mcBride failed to get elected because he rode this thing, and it sucked and still sucks today.)
2003-03-25 05:57:11 PM  
Hmm, two comments that blame the school system on the "right". My feeling is that it has been democrats who make up these lame ideas to test all schools into oblivian. But upon further reflection, it is both parties who are at fault.

How many times do we see: "Ooh, we need to raise taxes, or schools won't get funding!"
when the statement should be "Ooh, we need to raise taxes so we can fund our state website!" (or use "pave the roads", "pay the judges", or "give ourselves raises" in place of "fund our state website")
And this happens in both parties and every state. Scare mongering is what it is.

My point is ... look both ways before you cross the street.
2003-03-25 05:57:50 PM  
I knew it was only time before I heard the stupid farking FCAT mentioned on Fark, of all places. This test is PLAGUING the lives of students and teachers. Over half of our time in English class here in Florida, at least for sophomores like me, is spent wasting time on "FCAT strategies." It's complete and utter nonsense. It's terribly wannabe-egalitarian, and GOP Jeb Bush uses this fact to try to advance his case with Democrats on the basis that we're "treating everyone equally" by giving EVERYONE the ridiculous test, including newly-arrived immigrants. Just last year, it became the determinant of graduation. What Florida needs to understand is that to rise anywhere above being the 48th state in education, we need to LOWER the standards, selectively, and let GOP bureaucracy (funny-sounding, but true) and its accompanying "I don't care about school" mindset slowly wear off from teachers and students.

2003-03-25 06:01:22 PM  
Korovyov: "There are more ways to write tests than multiple-choice, and far more interesting and useful things to test than regurgitation."

I agree, but public school systems use standardized tests that are primarily made up of multiple choice questions. Mutiple choice tests are easier to create and much easier to grade, so therefore cost less overall for schools to use. To save money, public schools typically get their tests from the lowest bidder, not necessarily the best test creators.
2003-03-25 06:01:51 PM  
img.fark.netView Full Size

Either they have to "teach to the test" or cheat.

Standardized tests suck.
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