Need advice... a fellow teacher sabotaged one of my classes standardized exams...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by aim123, May 27, 2016.

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What should I do?

  1. Discuss it with my administrator

    40.0%
  2. Let it go

    60.0%
  1. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    May 27, 2016

    If the students told you they were allowed to sleep during a test, a class, that is something that should be forwarded as an irregularity. Those students who slept through part or all of the test could wind up with invalidated scores.
     
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  2. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    May 28, 2016

    If this was a true standardized test the way they are defined for us (AIR, PARCC), you would never be able to flip through the test to see what students did.

    That being said, I don't believe that waking a student up would be a violation of test security.
     
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  3. AmyMyNamey

    AmyMyNamey Comrade

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    May 28, 2016

    It's all our fault. We're just that evil and wretched, unqualified and uncaring.

    Pearson will fix everything. Or at least make a lot of money trying.

    The only thing aim123 could do is share her concerns with a sympathetic administrator, in the hopes that policies could be developed to curb slovenly behavior. Hope she has one of those around!
     
  4. Tulipteacher

    Tulipteacher Companion

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    May 28, 2016

    The students didn't do as well as they could've due to their own choices to blow off the test. It is not the proctor's fault. If this impacts their placement into high school, well, it should. Students who don't take school seriously enough to wake up for an important exam should not be attending competitive high schools. Your proctor didn't sabotage the students. They sabotaged themselves.

    Without actually seeing the written instructors to proctors, it is impossible to say if she should have or shouldn't have woken the students up. What matters isn't what the teachers at your school typically do, what matters is what the actual directions say to do. In my state, I would not be allowed to give a kid who looks discouraged a thumbs up. Nor would I be allowed to let a sleepy student walk or go wash his face.

    It is unfortunate that this will affect your rating. That is an unfortunate reality of today's teaching climate. Your frustration should be with the students who decided they didn't care. (That said, in my experience, the kids who blow off the test often believe deep down that they won't do well. So they prefer to blow it off so they can feel that they did poorly because they didn't try, and not because they tried but weren't capable.)

    If you talk to the administrator, it should be in the context of stating that x number of students fell asleep and didn't complete the test, and that is why their scores are lower. And then requesting that the test directions specify what to do in case of students falling asleep. Then if a proctor doesn't comply it would be a test misadministration.
     
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  5. applecore

    applecore Devotee

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    May 28, 2016

    I agree with this statement. We as teachers can only do so much.
     
  6. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Fanatic

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    If you choose to talk to admin, I think it is important to only share the facts. Example: Some of my students fell asleep during the test. Proctor didn't wake them up etc. Students left even questions they knew blank etc.

    I would be careful and make sure you don't insinuate that your standardized test was sabotaged. That is a personal opinion that probably won't be shared by your admin. It might end up making you look bad instead of shedding light on a proctor not doing as high quality of a job as might be expected.
     
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  7. Luv2TeachInTX

    Luv2TeachInTX Comrade

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    May 28, 2016

    Talk to admin. The proctoring teaching was not actively monitoring at all. The fact that she allowed students to sleep and leave large portions of their answers blank shows this. I would be livid if I were you.
     
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  8. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    May 28, 2016

    I find it truly difficult to imagine that there's any state out there with such strict proctoring instructions that a quick finger tap on a desk would be considered a testing irregularity. Any proctor who sees a student looking sleepy like that should obviously try to do something to stop it. I also don't really buy that there's any states who would ban a student from standing up to get a drink of water with proctor approval. If there are states with rules that draconian, they need to be getting huge publicity for it.
     
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  9. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    May 28, 2016

    It was NOT her job to wake those kids up. Also, depending on what kind of test this was, YOU may have broken some of the rules. During our end of grade tests we are not allowed to say ANYTHING to students other than what is in the manual. I hate that this happened, but I don't think the other teacher is to blame.
     
  10. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    May 28, 2016

    Oh, I disagree.

    I've proctored dozens of these tests in my day. I can remember one test in particular a few years ago where about 6 kids put their heads down during the test. I walked past them frequently, tapping on their desks and whispering for them to sit up and get to work. At least 3 students repeatedly ignored me throughout the whole test. During the last couple of minutes, they sat up and quickly bubbled in random answers. If anyone suggested that I failed to actively monitor them, I'd be pissed. I did my job; the students didn't. Not my fault.
     
  11. Tulipteacher

    Tulipteacher Companion

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    May 28, 2016

    There is a big difference between being allowed to let the student leave the testing room for the bathroom or water if the student requests it, versus the proctor telling the student to go get water because the student seems sleepy.

    I am allowed to do the former but definitely not the latter.
     
  12. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    May 28, 2016

    I agree with Otterpop. Providing timely feedback is an important part of learning and teaching. Students don't learn anything from these tests, and they aren't given feedback on how to do better. Sure the state gets some numbers that they can use to classify students or how well a school does, but it's useless for the students, so why should they take it seriously? And it's mostly useless for teachers, because the feedback provided to us is very late and very vague. I don't even get results for the state tests anymore because they aren't used for anything, while we wait for the new assessments for the NGSS.

    Although I think you can step around students not trying if you teach students the value of trying hard no matter what the challenge. I tell my students not to care about the state tests. Don't study for them, don't worry about them, whatever. We've learned the stuff as best we can, and while it won't affect them in any way, it's an opportunity to test what you've learned. Posed as a challenge to just do their best, this gets more kids going. Afterwards most of them said it was fun and mostly easy.

    As for the OPs problem, I agree that this is poor situation, but I don't know if you can accuse the other teacher of intentionally sabotaging your results. It's likely that the teacher either probably thought that they couldn't wake the student, or they felt bad for the students and just wanted to let them rest.
     
  13. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    May 28, 2016

    Just the fact that this is all a conversation shows that testing practices, monitoring, and proctoring are not the same in different schools, which undoubtedly impacts the validity of the data.
     
  14. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    May 28, 2016

    If you saw a student coughing uncontrollably during a test, would you suggest a drink of water? If you saw a student sneezing during a test, would you bring them a tissue? If you saw a clearly-upset student looking down at a pencil under another student's desk, would you bring it to them? I'm not seeing how telling a student to get a drink of water when they are clearly out of sorts is any different than any of these.
     
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  15. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    May 28, 2016

    Exactly, now imagine what it is like between grades for non standardized tests. Teachers prodding and poking students to get results they want.
     
  16. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    May 28, 2016

    Yeah, non-standardized tests are by their very definition, non-standardized, and subjective. Standardized tests are much less subjective, but they are not completely objective either. I think they are going to stay and there's no use in arguing to get rid of them but I think those in power should make themselves very aware of the areas in which standardized tests fail at being completely objective, and make sure that their application of these tests reflects this understanding.
     
  17. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    May 28, 2016

    I agree Peregrin, yet where I work so much is supposed to be common formative assessments. I also wish teachers(at least where I work) would stop acting so surprised when they claim their students did so great all year, but did not do so well on the state test. Letting students retake tests(immediately), telling students to recheck this question, do the first 5 questions then show me your answers and work before moving on, having other students read the stories and questions to low students,...etc. Those scores are simply not reflective of what the students can do independently.
     
  18. Tulipteacher

    Tulipteacher Companion

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    May 28, 2016

    Telling them to get a drink of water when they are sleepy amounts to suggesting a test-taking strategy to them during testing. In my state we can do no instruction on content or test-taking strategies on the day of the test. Telling a student who is coughing to get water would assisting with a "medical need" as well as providing a quiet environment for the other students.
     
  19. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    May 28, 2016

    Well I would just say that our role as teachers are to teach and to foster learning for students. While those practices you mention are not good for gaining a perfect independent idea of what students have learned or can do, they do help students to learn from these tests, making them good formative assessments (assessments for learning, not of learning).

    So those kinds of assessments might not be great for making certain lasting decisions, but they are good for the learning process and possibly informing teacher where they need to focus instruction on in the immediate future. A future summative assessment (an assessment of learning) might be something that they can use to make any important decisions with.
     
  20. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    May 28, 2016

    You do not have to stop and make them correct mistakes, redo questions, tell them which questions are wrong in the moment for it to be a formative assessment. You can let them take the test, then after the fact go back and look for strengths and weaknesses, not to mention pointing out issues in the moment seems more appropriate to me during activities. I prefer to have students learn these during activities.
     

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