Editor, Townsman:

Massachusetts Education Commissioner Jeff Riley wants to go ahead with MCAS testing as usual this year.

He feels these traditionally biased tests (year after year, wealthy school districts score well, economically challenged school districts score poorly) will show what our students did not “get” during this unprecedented year.

This will be an illogical waste of time. Students will spend two weeks on these tests, further diminishing their time spent actually learning, and frontline educators already know what has been sacrificed.

These tests will exacerbate students’ learning loss without providing any new information. 

Riley must listen to students, parents and frontline educators, as their combined  perspectives provide the most complete picture of what school districts need right now.

It is not common for frontline educators, superintendents and school committees all to agree on something, yet there is overwhelming agreement among them that administering the MCAS this year would do more harm than good, and Riley should heed their advice.

He must let frontline educators have the time they need to help their students accomplish as much as they possibly can in what has been an impossible school year.

Mary Robb



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