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Retiring Advanced Placement

May 18, 2020 pm31 4:07 pm

The College Board cannot plan a test, give a test, guarantee fairness, catch cheaters, or tell the truth.

This has been a rough week for them, with the AP Fiasco, and a long time coming. Even favorable coverage bends unfavorable.

Let’s run through the list:

  • They get schools to give appropriate space for free, and crumble when forced to come up with something themselves. They made no attempt to guarantee an appropriate environment for test-takers.
  • They get schools to plan administration for free, and when left to their own devices, fail. There were student taking tests at midnight. And at 2AM. And at 4AM.
  • They count on teachers to proctor and prevent cheating. Left to their own devices, they insult everyone with bullying “Don’t Cheat you Cheaters!” threats (which are as ineffective as they are insulting), pretend to be teens and try to entrap students (and are instantly found out), and fail to prevent actual cheating (as a google trends search of “how do you find an integral,” “progressive era,” “angular momentum,” or “active transport” quickly reveals).
  • They fail to develop an app (students know how to use apps), fail to obtain sufficient bandwidth, and then lie through their teeth, blaming teenagers when the teenagers actually followed the directions.
  • And instead of rectifying their mistake, they rescheduled exams for June – including rescheduling some at conflicting times.

What do we need these clowns for?

Curriculum?

There are many “AP Curricula” out there – we can continue using them without these clowns being involved. Schools and districts may also have their own high level courses – or courses that should have been considered “high level” but were not considered so without the AP imprimatur.

Test?

Hell, most teachers in my school know ±1 what their students will score.

Or even better, forget the tests. AP exams are way before the end of the year… replace them with performance-based assessment of projects or original writing, or research or creative work. This could be better than APs. Can you imagine students spending time applying their knowledge, rather than cramming? And we get more time to do the work. No one will want to go back.

Postscripts

We have a moment. Now is the time to move to get the College Board out of our public schools.

We should carefully examine ANY private company that is intruding into public education.

We will look back on this, years from now, and wonder why it took so long.

 

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